SHANGHAI, Jan 12 (Reuters) - China stocks shrugged off soft trade data to rise on Friday morning, helped by gains in banking and energy firms. ** China’s exports and imports growth slowed in December after unexpectedly surging the previous month, adding to signs of ebbing economic growth as the government extended a crackdown on financial risks and factory pollution. “ Although the trade data are often volatile, this latest decline (in import volumes)...is a sign that domestic demand may have weakened at the end of last year,” Capital Economics Senior China Economist Julian Evans-Pritchard wrote in a note. ** At 04:02 GMT, the Shanghai Composite index was up 3.31 points or 0.1 percent at 3,428.65. ** China’s blue-chip CSI300 index was up 0.2 percent, with its financial sector sub-index higher by 0.3 percent, the consumer staples sector up 0.33 percent, the real estate index up 0.26 percent and healthcare sub-index up 0.57 percent. ** Chinese H-shares listed in Hong Kong rose 0.84 percent at 12,398.89, while the Hang Seng Index was up 0.29 percent at 31,211.32. ** The smaller Shenzhen index was down 0.08 percent and the start-up board ChiNext Composite index was weaker by 0.47 percent. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 0.41 percent while Japan’s Nikkei index was down 0.05 percent . ** The yuan was quoted at 6.482 per U.S. dollar, 0.24 percent firmer than the previous close of 6.4978. ** The largest percentage gainers in the main Shanghai Composite index were Shenzhen Heungkong Holding Co Ltd up 10.09 percent, followed by Beijing Vantone Real Estate Co Ltd gaining 9.92 percent and Sundy Land Investment Co Ltd up by 8.29 percent. ** The largest percentage losses in the Shanghai index were Avic Shenyang Aircraft Co Ltd down 10 percent, followed by Jiangsu Protruly Vision Technology Group Co Ltd losing 5.03 percent and BOCO Inter-Telecom Co Ltd down by 5.01 percent. ** So far this year, the Shanghai stock index is up 3.57 percent, while China’s H-share index is up 5.0 percent. Shanghai stocks have risen 3.57 percent this month. ** The top gainers among H-shares were Air China Ltd up 5.62 percent, followed by BYD Co Ltd gaining 3.71 percent and China Merchants Bank Co Ltd up by 2.82 percent. ** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were China Galaxy Securities Co Ltd which has fallen 1.18 percent, Zhuzhou CRRC Times Electric Co Ltd which has lost 1.0 percent and CRRC Corp Ltd down by 1.0 percent. ** About 10.32 billion shares have traded so far on the Shanghai exchange, roughly 65.2 percent of the market’s 30-day moving average of 15.82 billion shares a day. The volume traded was 17.38 billion as of the last full trading day. ** As of 04:02 GMT, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 27.74 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. ** The Shanghai stock index is above its 50-day moving average and above its 200-day moving average. ** The price-to-earnings ratio of the Shanghai index was 15.46 as of the last full trading day while the dividend yield was 1.9 percent. ** So far this week, the market capitalisation of the Shanghai stock index has risen by 1.10 percent to 30.04 trillion yuan. ** In Hong Kong, the sub-index of the Hang Seng index tracking energy shares rose 1.8 percent while the IT sector rose 0.3 percent. The top gainer on Hang Seng was CNOOC Ltd up 2.79 percent, while the biggest loser was Wharf Real Estate Investment Company Ltd which was down 2.40 percent.
Reporting by Luoyan Liu and John Ruwitch; Editing by Jacqueline Wong