The Chinese government’s State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) has launched an anti-trust investigation against the Alibaba Group to verify charges that its marketplaces require merchants to sign exclusive agreements that prevent them from offering products on other internet platforms. At the same time, the People’s Bank of China, which regulates financial markets, has notified Alibaba’s Ant Group subsidiary that it plans to meet its management to guide it to “implement financial supervision, fair competition and protect the legitimate rights and interests of consumers.” Obervers believe that the meeting concerns Ant’s lucrative credit programs, which contributed nearly 40 percent of its revenues in the first half of this year.