SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China's main indexes barely changed on Thursday after a three-session winning streak, with investor attention largely diverted by a dramatic rebound in the offshore yuan.
Investors' were muted in their response towards a private survey showing that growth in China's services sector accelerated to a 17-month high in December.
Attention was squarely on the Chinese currency, which has rebounded sharply against the U.S. dollar in the offshore market, sparking speculation that Beijing wants a firm grip on the yuan before President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration later this month.
Sectors were mixed. Gains were led by transport .CSI300TRANS and energy shares .CSI300EN, while consumer .CSI300CS and healthcare .CSI300HC took a breather.
State-owned enterprise (SOE) reform was the main driver behind the rally of some heavyweight blue-chips, as China vowed to push forward mixed-ownership reforms in several key sectors, including aviation, railway and telecommunications.
SOE Reform bellwether China United Network Communications (600050.SS) settled up 5.7 percent, within sight of an 16-month high hit on late December. The stock soared 89 percent since end September.
Reporting by Luoyan Liu and John Ruwitch; Editing by Eric Meijer