* SSEC 0.0 pct, CSI300 +0.1 pct, HSI +0.1 pct
* Markets unfazed by fresh curbs from insurance regulator
* Small-caps in China advance 1 percent
* Dollar strength continues to exert pressure on HK shares
SHANGHAI, Dec 16 China stocks edged up on
Friday, stabilising after the previous session's sell-off in the
wake of tighter U.S. monetary policy, with strength in small-cap
shares lending support.
The Hong Kong market also rebounded after hitting a
four-month low the previous session. But gains were capped after
the Federal Reserve's rate hike and hawkish policy signals on
Thursday, potentially luring capital out of emerging markets.
The blue-chip CSI300 index rose 0.1 percent, to
3,342.35 points by the midday break, while the Shanghai
Composite Index was unchanged at 3,116.48 points.
Blue chips in China are on track for their biggest weekly
fall since January, down more than 4.3 percent so far this week,
in part dragged by regulators' recent moves to curb insurers'
Hong Kong's Hang Seng index added 0.1 percent, to
22,076.96 points, while the Hong Kong China Enterprises Index
gained 0.3 percent, to 9,502.91 points
Hong Kong stocks, which are down around 3 percent this week,
are set to post their biggest weekly fall in three months.
Market reaction was muted towards possibly fresh measures
from the insurance regulator. The Securities Times reported the
regulator is considering lowering the percentage of equity
assets allowed on insurers' balance sheets by 10 percent.
In addition, the regulator issued warnings to 10 insurers
after they failed to properly carry out self-inspections on
their risk levels, the Securities Daily reported on Friday.
Aggressive stake-building by mainland insurers has raised
authorities' concern on possible financial risks.
The markets got some support from small-caps. Shenzhen's
start-up board ChiNext was up more than 1 percent,
on signs that some foreign investors were buying small-caps
after the index's recent weakness.
Investors also found some solace from the bond market.
China's 10-treasury futures rebounded nearly 1 percent at the
lunch break after Thursday's panic sell-off in response to the
Federal Reserves' policy tightening.
In Hong Kong, the market was mixed, with gains in service
and energy shares cancelled out by losses in telecommunication
Shares in the city slumped 1.8 percent in the previous
session after the Fed flagged more rate-path projections, and a
strengthening dollar continued to put pressure on the market.
The dollar index, which measures the greenback's
strength against a basket of major currencies, stood at 103.050,
after climbing to 103.560 overnight, the highest in nearly 14
(Reporting by Jackie Cai and John Ruwitch; Editing by