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Metals maintain market optimism at midday

SHANGHAI'S key stock index continued yesterday's gains in morning trade with strong performances by metal producers and the finance sector.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index was up 1.12 percent, or 26.49 points, to close at 2,399.70 points. Turnover was 82.9 billion yuan (US$12.1 billion). Gainers outnumbered losers 661 to 182 and 65 remained unchanged.

The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks the smaller domestic market, added 1.62 percent to close at 796.81 points.

China United Telecommunications Co, which owns the country's second-biggest mobile-phone company, was up 0.35 percent to 5.79 yuan. Its Hong Kong-listed unit China Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd posted a 58 percent increase in full-year profit.

Zijin Mining, China's biggest gold producer, added 2.48 percent to 11.14 yuan. Zhongjin Gold Corp, the second largest, edged up 0.32 percent to 59.51 yuan.

Copper rose 4.4 percent in New York yesterday. The metal has gained 31 percent in the first quarter of 2009. Jiangxi Copper, China's biggest producer of the metal, hiked 5.32 percent to 24.33 yuan.

Banks showed mixed results. Shanghai Pudong Development Bank dipped 0.23 percent to 21.87 yuan. China Construction Bank edged up 0.23 percent to 4.31 yuan. China Merchants Bank Co added 0.82 percent to 16.06 yuan.


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