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Key stock index ends slightly higher

SHANGHAI'S key stock index closed slightly higher yesterday, led by strong performances by pharmaceutical companies and the banking sector.

The Shanghai Composite Index added 0.52 percent, or 14.45 points, to close at 2,768.34. Turnover was 139 billion yuan (US$20.3 billion).

"The market is rather divided over the economic outlook and investors have to be careful before there are clear signs of recovery," said a research note by Galaxy Securities. "We see the market going through a period of adjustment after having gained 52 percent since the beginning of this year."

Banks continued to climb. Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the nation's biggest lender, added 3.80 percent to 4.64 yuan, Bank of China surged 5.15 percent to 3.88 yuan, China Construction Bank rose 5.79 percent to 5.12 yuan and China Merchants Bank Co jumped 3.18 percent to 19.81 yuan.

Bio-pharmaceutical companies also rose as the State Council, or Cabinet, approved guidelines to encourage the development of China's biological science industry, making it one of the country's pillar industries.

Mayinglong Pharmaceutical Group surged by the daily limit of 10 percent to 41.07 yuan.

Zhejiang Medicine Co Ltd added 4.11 percent to 23.58 yuan and Shanghai Zhong Xi Pharmaceutical Co Ltd advanced 4.23 percent to close at 11.58 yuan.


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