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TMFEditorsDesk (< 20)

Chinese Authorities Detain Four



July 07, 2009 – Comments (1) | RELATED TICKERS: PEP , RTP.DL , ACH

Four Rio Tinto (NYSE: RTP) employees, three of which are Chinese citizens, are being held by Chinese authorities and the company has no idea why. Hmm...

From Reuters:
Rio, which last month scrapped a $19.5 billion deal with Chinese state-owned metals group Chinalco, said it was unclear why the employees were detained on Sunday..."We haven't been able to make contact with them since and we've asked the Chinese authorities for an explanation and we're haven't received anything from them."

Yikes...maybe there is a valid reason to detain the four Rio Tinto employees, but it sure looks shady on the surface no matter how you slice it.

Recently, we've been covering companies that have been doing business with other countries like Russia. I highly suggest you read Toby's article about Ikea and why he prefers to stay away from Russian companies. Then follow it up with Anand's blog about Pepsi investing $1 billion in Russia. I'm not saying that Chinese companies are the same as Russian companies -- in fact, our Global Gains team is currently scouring China in search of Chinese investments -- but we shouldn't forget that international companies may operate differently than those in the U.S.    

Are there any countries that you would stay away from? Or do you care to take a guess at what happened with Rio Tinto's four? Leave us a comment below!

-- Katrina, owns no positions in any companies mentioned

1 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On July 07, 2009 at 4:38 PM, TMFEditorsDesk (< 20) wrote:

Scary, indeed.  Another question for those who buy individual stocks in foreign countries (vs. those who buy mutual funds or ETF's).  How do you get comfortable with the business, regulatory, and investing environment in a country?  I'm assuming everyone isn't visiting all the countries they invest in.


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