August 21, 2017 / 4:44 AM / 2 years ago

China, Hong Kong shares buoyed by Unicom news, Chalco output boost

* SSEC 0.2 pct, CSI300 0.3 pct, HSI 0.X pct

* China Unicom Shanghai unit up by 10 pct limit after CSRC okays ownership plan

* Chalco up in Shanghai, Hong Kong on rising production

SHANGHAI, Aug 21 (Reuters) - China stocks rose on Monday, led by telecoms group China Unicom which shot up by its daily limit after the securities regulator said its $11.7 billion ownership reform plan does not violate rules.

The CSI300 index rose 0.3 percent to 3,735.64 points by the midday break, while the Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.2 percent to 3,276.50.

China CSI300 stock index futures for September rose 0.3 percent, to 3,717.4, 18.24 points below the current value of the underlying index.

However, market watchers were split on the prospects for further index gains, with some pointing to continued technical resistance for the Shanghai index at 3,300 points, while others said strong corporate earnings could help the market to break through.

China United Network Communications Ltd, China Unicom’s unit, ended the morning up 10 percent in its first session since trading in its shares was suspended on April 5.

The China Securities Regulatory Commission said Monday morning that a plan by Unicom’s Shanghai unit to tap more than a dozen major investors, including Alibaba Group, Tencent Holdings and Baidu, did not violate rules on private placements.

Unicom’s Hong Kong-listed shares rose 8.2 percent by midday after surging nearly 11 percent at one point to their highest in more than two years. Trade in the stock had been suspended on Aug. 16.

Materials companies also rose strongly, led by Aluminum Corp of China (Chalco), which gained 6.5 percent.

The president of the state-owned producer said on Friday that it had increased aluminium production in the first half of 2017 to take advantage of capacity cuts by private rivals, and would continue to raise production in the second half.

The materials sub-index rose 1.5 percent.

China’s iron ore, steel and coal futures prices extended gains on Monday, fueled by worries about shortages ahead of government-mandated production curbs set to start in coming months to reduce pollution levels over winter.

Gains in Hong Kong mirrored those in mainland markets.

The Hang Seng index added 0.5 percent, to 27,189.02 points, and the Hong Kong China Enterprises Index gained 0.7 percent, to 10,770.93.

Chalco shares in Hong Kong, which are not a constitutent of the Hang Seng index, gained 2.2 percent.

The index measuring price differences between dual-listed companies in Shanghai and Hong Kong stood at 128.96.

A value above 100 indicates Shanghai shares are pricing at a premium to shares in the same company trading in Hong Kong, and vice versa.

($1 = 6.6678 Chinese yuan)

Reporting by Andrew Galbraith; Editing by Kim Coghill

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