October 23, 2018 / 4:38 AM / 8 months ago

China shares fall as investor concerns linger

* SSEC -1.4 pct, CSI300 -1.6 pct, HSI -2 pct

* Securities firms rise despite wider losses

* New HK-Macau-Zhuhai bridge offers little support for Macau shares

SHANGHAI, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Stocks in China fell on Tuesday after the country’s blue-chip index posted its strongest day in nearly three years on Monday, as investor concerns about the economy and risks posed by shares pledged for loans continued to hamper sentiment.

** At midday, the Shanghai Composite index was down 1.37 percent at 2,618.42 points. ** China’s blue-chip CSI300 index was down 1.64 percent, with its financial sector sub-index lower by 0.92 percent, the consumer staples sector down 4.4 percent, the real estate index lower 1.53 percent and the healthcare sub-index down 1.87 percent. ** “The economy has yet to see improvement at the margins, so the significant rebound in A-shares on Friday and Monday was mainly driven by improved investor risk sentiment,” analysts at China Fortune Securities said in a note. “After two days of letting (negative) sentiment drain off, prices will slowly return to reasonable levels. Finding a bottom is still the fundamental theme.” ** Despite broader weakness, shares in securities firms continued to rise as investors expect support from regulators to benefit brokerages. An index tracking the sector was up 1.3 percent at midday, after rising the daily 10 percent limit on Monday. ** Chinese H-shares listed in Hong Kong were 1.76 percent lower at 10,306.46, while the Hang Seng Index was down 2.03 percent at 25,622.83. ** Macau gambling shares in Hong Kong also fell despite the opening of a new bridge connecting Hong Kong, Macau and the mainland city of Zhuhai. Wynn Macau was 6.41 percent lower and Sands China Ltd was down 4.27 percent. ** The smaller Shenzhen index was down 1.23 percent and the start-up board ChiNext Composite index was 1.06 percent weaker. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was down 1.69 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index fell 2.28 percent. ** The yuan was quoted at 6.9418 per U.S. dollar, 0.04 percent firmer than the previous close of 6.9444. ** The largest percentage gainers on the main Shanghai Composite index were Shanghai Greencourt Investment Group Co Ltd , up 10.1 percent, followed by Jiangsu Nanfang Medical Co Ltd, gaining 10.03 percent, and Shenyang Commercial City Co Ltd, up by 10.02 percent. ** The largest percentage losers on the Shanghai index were Xilinmen Furniture Co Ltd, down 10 percent, followed by Anhui Kouzi Distillery Co Ltd, losing 7.86 percent, and Kangmei Pharmaceutical Co Ltd, down by 7.81 percent. ** So far this year, the Shanghai stock index is down 19.72 percent, while China’s H-share index is down 10.4 percent. Shanghai stocks have declined 5.9 percent this month. ** The top gainers among H-shares were Shenzhou International Group Holdings Ltd, up 2.37 percent, followed by China Telecom Corp Ltd, gaining 1.28 percent. ** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were ZhongAn Online P & C Insurance Co Ltd, which has fallen 6.11 percent, China Resources Land Ltd, which has lost 5.7 percent, and Anhui Conch Cement Co Ltd, down by 4.9 percent. ** About 10.92 billion shares have traded so far on the Shanghai exchange, roughly 87.4 percent of the market’s 30-day moving average of 12.49 billion shares a day. The volume traded was 21.19 billion as of the last full trading day. ** As of 04:16 GMT, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 23.57 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. ** The Shanghai stock index is below its 50-day moving average and below its 200-day moving average. ** The price-to-earnings ratio of the Shanghai index was 11.35 as of the last full trading day, while the dividend yield was 2.8 percent. ** So far this week, the market capitalisation of the Shanghai stock index has risen by 4.10 percent to 28.36 trillion yuan. ** In Hong Kong, the sub-index of the Hang Seng index tracking energy shares dipped 1.6 percent, while the IT sector fell 2.9 percent. The top gainer on Hang Seng was Shenzhou International Group Holdings Ltd, up 2.37 percent, while the biggest loser was Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd, which was down 6.25 percent.

Reporting by Andrew Galbraith; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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