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Chinese shares sluggish for second day, down nearly 2%

Chinese equities fell by almost 2 percent today, continuing a downward trend for the second day this week as investors remained cautious and chose to sit on the fence.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index lost 54.83 points, or 1.89 percent, to finish at 2,842.72.

The Shenzhen Component Index fell 2.97 percent, or 351.13 points, to close at 11,462.33.

Combined turnover also shrank, from Tuesday's 222.77 billion yuan to 191.61 billion yuan (28.1 billion U.S. dollars).

Losers outnumbered gainers by 760 to 107 in Shanghai and 662 to110 in Shenzhen.

Chinese equities closed almost flat in the morning session, but dived in the afternoon as investors sold holdings to cash in on earlier gains.

Wednesday's losses were led by stocks of coal producers, pharmaceutical makers and nonferrous metals. China Shenhua, the nation's biggest coal producer, retreated 3.88 percent to 30.7 yuan, with the sector down 4.5 percent.

Guangzhou-based Da An Gene Co. showed the biggest drop in the medicine and bio sector by 9.81 percent to 14.43 yuan.

Nonferrous metal manufacturers fell across the board, except Xiangtan Electrochemical Scientific Co., with the sector down 3.42percent.

Market heavyweights remained weak, and shares of big banks, oil producers and real estate developers all retreated.

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the country's biggest lender, slipped 0.41 percent to 4.91 yuan, and China Construction Bank dipped 1.39 percent to 5.66 yuan.

Sinopec, Asia's largest refiner, lost 0.62 percent to 11.26 yuan, and PetroChina, the nation's biggest oil producer, fell 1.69percent to 12.77 yuan.

China Vanke, the country's biggest property developer, retreated 3.3 percent to 10.55 yuan.

Analysts with Lianhe Securities, however, said further falls would be limited as there had been no change in China's economic recovery.


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