China’s WhatsApp-like platform WeChat has terminated Daybreak, an official account of the U.S. news agency Bloomberg that focuses on financial updates.
The South China Morning Post reported that all posts from Daybreak became unavailable on July 7. The last time the account updated its posts was on July 1, which involved pre-trading news and market data feeds.
WeChat is owned by Chinese tech behemoth Tencent Holdings. It said there have been complaints about Daybreak’s activities which resulted in the suspension. No further details about any violation were spelled out.
Other WeChat accounts of the New York-based news outlet remained active. These include the main page and numerous others that focus on financial services, recruitment, and energy news.
Before being removed, Daybreak had been posting daily global market information since January 2021.
While there is yet any information about the abrupt suspension of Daybreak, it came as China is strengthening internet control on the critics of the country’s faltering economy and zero-Covid policy.
The South China Morning Post took the example of Hong Hao who is the former head of research at Bocom International Holdings. His accounts on both WeChat and the Chinese Twitter-like platform Weibo were censored earlier this year. Hong had spoken openly about his disapproval of the Covid lockdown in Shanghai before the blockade.
On his Twitter account, Hong Hao also gave his comment on the elimination of Daybreak from WeChat. Hong tweeted, [quote] “Mainland market increasingly misinformed & mispriced.” [end quote].