Editor’s Note: This post is contributed by Hugo Wu, a Hong Kong-based Internet industry analyst, private banker, progressivist, and web economy believer. Feel free to contact him on WeChat (ID: i-quan).

March 14, Chinese regulators have dropped the first bombshell on the internet finance party. The central bank of China just halted the QR code scanning payment service and online credit card offering by Tencent and Alibaba. Unlike the previous guidelines for P2P lending which draw only principles for players to follow, this time it is much closer to the “real deal”.

Almost like a deja vu of the China Mobile vs Tencent episode last year, investors panicked in a frantic selling as if the heat on Chinese internet is over all of a sudden. All sorts of conspiracy theories followed in the media almost overnight. But as an analyst in this field, one couldn’t help but to wonder the peculiar timing of this news.

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