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Insurance firms, metal producers push index higher in morning trade

SHANGHAI'S key stock index advanced more than 1 percent to above 3,200 points in morning trade with strong performances noted among insurance shares and metal producers.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.54 percent, or 49.00 points, to close at 3,238.74 points as of 11:30am. Turnover was 121.9 billion yuan (US$17.8 billion). Gainers outnumbered losers 637 to 207 and 64 remained unchanged.

The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks the smaller domestic market, was up 1.14 percent to close at 1,096.71 points.

China Petroleum & Chemical Corp, Asia's largest refiner and also known as Sinopec, rose 2.16 percent to 11.84 yuan. PetroChina, the biggest index component, rose 1.44 percent to 14.80 yuan.

Huaneng Power International Inc added 1.23 percent to 8.23 yuan. Huadian Power International Corporation Ltd advanced 1.63 percent to 5.60 yuan.

Metal producers were strong. Aluminum Corporation of China Ltd jumped 6.37 percent to 16.02 yuan. Jiangxi Copper Co surged 6.36 percent to 42.45 yuan. Yunnan Tin Co Ltd rose 7.06 percent to 27.00 yuan.

Insurance shares were also among the gainers. China Pacific Insurance (Group) Co Ltd edged up 0.97 percent to 29.09 yuan. Ping An Insurance (Group) Co advanced 2.54 percent to 61.42 yuan. China Life Insurance Co Ltd, the country's largest life insurance company, surged 7.07 percent to 32.10 yuan.

Real estate developers were weak as the banking regulator ordered lenders to comply with mortgage rules. China Vanke Co, the biggest listed domestic real estate developer, dipped 0.71 percent to 13.97 yuan. Gemdale Corporation lost 1.65 percent to 17.32 yuan. Poly Real Estate Group dropped 2.09 percent to 28.60 yuan.

Banks were among the losers. Industrial & Commercial Bank of China, the nation's biggest lender, dipped 0.38 percent to 5.22 yuan. Shanghai Pudong Development Bank lost 0.04 percent to 25.05 yuan. China Construction Bank was down 0.33 percent to close at 6.08 yuan. Bank of Communications dropped 1.49 percent to 9.89 yuan.


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