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Shanghai shares up on manufacturing data, ECB stimulus

Shanghai stocks edged up today, buoyed by data showing China’s manufacturing sector may have rebounded in January and the European Central Bank’s bond-buying program that raised expectations for increasing capital inflows.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index ended 0.25 percent up to 3,351.76 points, with daily turnover at 421 billion yuan (US$67.9 billion). For the week, the index has recovered most of the losses from Monday’s 7.7 percent slump, falling 0.73 percent and snapping a winning streak of eight straight weeks.

The HSBC Flash China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index came in at came in at 49.8 in January, up marginally from the final reading of 49.6 in December.

China International Capital Corp Ltd said the data provided positive signs as sub indexes of new orders and production have picked up above 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

“Although the headline index remained in a contracting territory, the rebound signaled the economy is stabilizing,” the investment bank said.

The market was also bolstered by improving liquidity prospect. The ECB on Thursday unveiled a massive government bond-purchasing program in a bid to stimulate the region’s sagging economy.

“There will be some capital inflows to yuan-denominated assets in the short term, but the overall impact is limited,” said Fang Lei, analyst with Ping An Securities.

Brokerages continued to lead the market advance. CITIC Securities rose 2.7 percent to 29.21 yuan after the company said it has been approved to open 22 new branches.


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