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Morning stock rise hits resistance

SHANGHAI'S key stock index soared at the beginning of trading but the rise narrowed at the midday break as the index met technical resistance at 3,000 points.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index added 0.05 percent, or 1.38 points, to close at 2,976.69 points, after touching a high of 2,976.69 points. Losers outnumbered gainers 558 to 268 while 20 remained unchanged. Turnover reached 78.4 billion yuan (US$11.53 billion) in the morning session.

Shares opened higher, led by oil producers after the National Development and Reform Commission raised the gasoline and diesel price by 9 percent and 10 percent respectively, the second time in one month to track higher crude oil rates. But the local benchmark index began to fluctuate as investors divided on trends when it climbed near 3,000 points.

Oil and coal producers were strong. PetroChina, the biggest component index and China's top oil producer, edged up 0.55 percent to 14.52 yuan. Sinopec, Asia's largest oil refiner, expanded 1.04 percent to 10.7 yuan. Datong Coal Industry Co surged 5.45 percent to 36.77 yuan. Pingdingshan Tianan Coal Mining Co jumped 2.38 percent to 29.26 yuan. China Shenhua Energy Co, Asia's largest coal producer, increased 0.8 percent to 30.06 yuan.

Steel producers were sluggish after steel price rises slowed. Baoshan Iron & Steel Co, the country's largest steelmaker, retreated 2.76 percent to 7.04 yuan. Wuhan Iron & Steel Co lost 2.84 percent to 7.87 yuan and Angang Steel Co, China's second-biggest steel maker, withdrew 1.84 percent to 13.35 yuan.

Automakers were weak. SAIC Motor Corp tumbled 3.72 percent to 15.01 yuan. Dongfeng Automobile Co was down 1.66 percent to 4.73 yuan. Beiqi Foton Motor Co slumped 3.26 percent to 13.34 yuan.


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