June 21, 2018 / 7:21 AM / 3 months ago

Shanghai stocks hit 2-year closing low on Sino-U.S. trade war woes

* Shanghai stocks end lower, blue-chip CSI300 index down

* Gains in Shanghai stocks led by Nanjing Inform Storage Equipment Group Co Ltd and losses by NINGBO BIRD Co Ltd

* China’s A-shares are at a 20.50 percent premium over H-shares

SHANGHAI, June 21 (Reuters) - China stocks shed early gains to end lower on Thursday, with the benchmark Shanghai index closing at a two-year low, as caution prevailed amid lingering worries over Sino-U.S. trade spat.

** The blue-chip CSI300 index closed down 1.2 percent at 3,592.97 points, while the Shanghai Composite Index ended 1.4 percent lower to 2,875.81 points. ** Shares of about 100 firms were down by the daily limit of 10 percent. ** Market participants found some solace after Beijing said it will use targeted cuts in banks’ reserve requirement ratios (RRR) and other policy tools to boost credit support for small firms and keep economic growth steady. ** However, sentiment was still dampened amid lingering worries over a potential full-blown trade war between China and the United States. ** China’s commerce ministry on Thursday accused the United States of being “capricious” over bilateral trade issues, and warned that the interests of U.S. workers and farmers ultimately will be hurt by Washington’s penchant for brandishing “big sticks”. ** Moreover, liquidity worries added to pressure, with ongoing concerns that the listings of technology giants could sap the already tight liquidity in the market. ** The newly-listed biotech-research platform WuXi AppTec slumped 9.5 percent, posting its worst day since its debut in Shanghai, while another “unicorn” Foxconn Industrial Internet closed down 8.5 percent, having tumbled more than 30 percent from its peak of 26.36 yuan per share just a week ago. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was weaker by 0.66 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed up 0.61 percent. ** At 0702 GMT, the yuan was quoted at 6.5073 per U.S. dollar, 0.5 percent weaker than the previous close of 6.475. ** The largest percentage gainers in the main Shanghai Composite index were Nanjing Inform Storage Equipment Group Co Ltd , which ended up 10.02 percent, followed by Xining Special Steel Co Ltd, which closed 9.98 percent higher and Wintime Energy Co Ltd, which ended 9.94 percent higher. ** The largest percentage losses in the Shanghai index were NINGBO BIRD Co Ltd, which closed down 10.11 percent, followed by Shandong Huapeng Glass Co Ltd, which closed 10.05 percent lower and Shenzhen Kingdom SCI-Tech Co Ltd , which closed down 10.04 percent. ** So far this year, the Shanghai stock index is down 13 percent, the CSI300 has fallen 10.9 percent, while China’s H-share index listed in Hong Kong is down 2.9 percent. Shanghai stocks have declined 7.1 percent this month. ** As of 0702 GMT, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 20.50 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. (Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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