Shearman & Sterling has for years been a major player in the Hong Kong IPO market. But this year the Wall Street firm saw a problem: The number of initial public offerings in Hong Kong had dropped dramatically.

The U.S.-China trade war, global economic worries and political unrest in Hong Kong all contributed to the downturn, which has been significant. This past summer has been the worst for IPOs in Hong Kong since 2012, according to the South China Morning Post. In the entire month of August, only one company listed on the Hong Kong stock exchange, down from eight in the same month the previous year. As of September, 101 companies have listed in Hong Kong this year, down from 150 in the same period last year. Making the decline even more pronounced, total funds raised by IPOs as of September is $10.8 billion, less than half the amount raised in the same period last year.

Kyungwon Lee Kyungwon Lee/courtesy photo

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