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Shanghai stocks make slim gains at midday

SHANGHAI'S key stock index edged up in the morning session with gains registered in the financial sector and amongst blue chips.

The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.06 percent, or 1.16 points, to 1,995.27 points as of 11:30am. Turnover was 32.9 billion yuan (US$4.80 billion). Losing shares outnumbered gainers 418 to 413 and 77 remained unchanged.

The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks the smaller domestic market, added 0.21 percent, or 1.28 points, to 608.10 points.

Shanghai Pudong Development Bank advanced 2.84 percent to 16.66 yuan. Industrial & Commercial Bank of China, the nation's biggest lender, edged up 0.82 percent to finish the session at 3.71 yuan. Bank of Communications added 0.90 percent to 5.61 yuan.

Angang Steel Co, the country's second-largest steel maker by market value, said profit for 2008 fell 55 percent due to the rising cost of raw materials. Its stock retreated 2.82 percent to 7.92 yuan.

Datang International Power Generation Co, the unit of China's second-biggest electricity producer, said it may post an 85 percent drop in profit last year. Its shares were down 2.15 percent to close at 6.84 yuan.

China Shenhua Energy Co, the nation's largest coal producer, said its output of fuel increased 18 percent from the previous year due to rising domestic demand. Its stock edged up 0.20 percent to 19.63 yuan.

Sichuan Hongda Chemical Industry Co, the country's third-largest zinc producer, said its net loss for 2008 will be between 500 million yuan and 590 million yuan as the earthquake in May disrupted production for more than four months. Its shares fell 1.45 percent to 6.12 yuan.

Suning Appliance Co, China's biggest home appliance retailer by market value, said its net income for 2008 will rise more than 40 percent from the previous year, compared with its earlier forecast of at least 60 percent. Its shares buckled 7.96 percent to 16.08 yuan.


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