February 5, 2020 / 7:40 AM / 17 days ago

China stocks rise on policy hopes; start-ups lead

* Shanghai shares add 1.3%, blue-chips up 1.1%

* China readies more measures to stabilise economy -sources

* Tech-heavy start-up board drives market’s gain

SHANGHAI/HONG KONG, Feb 5 (Reuters) - China stocks climbed on Wednesday as investors bet on further policy support from Beijing to offset the impact of a fast-spreading new coronavirus, with start-ups leading the gains.

** At the close, the Shanghai Composite index was up 1.3% at 2,818.09, moving further away from a one-year bottom hit during Monday’s selloff. The blue-chip CSI300 index gained 1.1%. ** CSI300’s financial sector sub-index was higher by 0.3%, the consumer staples sector rose 1.4%, the real estate index was up 0.4% and healthcare shares rallied 3.3%. ** The smaller Shenzhen index rose 2.5%, while the tech-heavy start-up board index ChiNextP rallied as much as 4.4% before closing 3% higher - trading at levels last seen before the Lunar New Year holiday. ** Among best performers in the index were Shenzhen Mindray Bio-Medical Electronics and battery maker CATL . Both surged by their 10% daily limits. ** Strong gains in China’s start-up board companies boosted broader market sentiment, said Zhang Gang, an analyst with China Central Securities. ** Reuters reported on Tuesday Chinese policymakers are readying measures to support an economy jolted by a coronavirus outbreak that is expected to have a devastating impact on first-quarter growth. ** The death toll in China passed 490, as two U.S. airlines suspended flights to Hong Kong following the first fatality there and 10 cases were confirmed on a quarantined Japanese cruise ship. ** China’s central bank said on Tuesday that its huge liquidity injections through open market operations this week showed its determination to restore market confidence. ** Some listed companies announced share buybacks, while fund managers and their employees also planned to purchase their own funds to buy equities. ** Growth in China’s services sector slowed for a second straight month in January, a traditionally busy sales season, a private sector survey showed. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 0.4%, while Japan’s Nikkei index was up 1%. ** The onshore yuan was flat at 6.9991 by 0710 GMT. ** So far this year, the Shanghai stock index is down 7.6% and the CSI300 has fallen 6.5%. ** About 30.98 billion shares were traded on the Shanghai exchange. The volume in the previous trading session was 36.4 billion. ** The Shanghai stock index is below its 50-day moving average and below its 200-day moving average. (Reporting by Luoyan Liu in Shanghai and Noah Sin in Hong Kong; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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