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August 16, 2016

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Shares rise to highest in over 7 months

SHANGHAI’S key share index surged to the highest level in over seven months yesterday, on hopes for an economic stimulus and rising prospects that a scheme to link the Shenzhen and Hong Kong bourses would be unveiled.

The Shanghai Composite Index rose 2.44 percent to close at 3,125.20 points, the highest level since January 12.

China’s dismal economic data for retail sales, investment, lending, and industrial production released last Friday sparked hopes that stimulus measures would be raised to bolster growth. “More fiscal stimulus will be deployed to boost investments as a way to stabilize growth,” said Jacqueline Rong, a BNP Paribas economist.

Property developers and brokerages gained, while small-cap shares on Shenzhen’s ChiNext Index, which tracks the NASDAQ-style growth enterprise board, jumped 3.27 percent.

Brokerages rose the most yesterday as hopes ran high that the launch of the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Stock Connect was imminent.

CITIC Securities, China’s biggest listed brokerage, added 5 percent to 18.01 yuan. Huatai Securities rose by the 10 percent daily limit to 21.43 yuan.

The Hong Kong Economic Journal yesterday cited people familiar with the matter as saying the trading link could be announced as soon as this week and would be officially launched in December.

“Market expectations are rising for an official announcement for the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Connect and quota expansion for the Shanghai-Hong Kong Connect,” Gao Ting, head of China Strategy at UBS Securities, wrote in a note yesterday.

Property developers also soared when credit data released after the market close on Friday revealed home mortgages comprised most of China’s new yuan lending in July.

Greenland Holdings Corp Ltd surged by the daily limit of 10 percent to 10.80 yuan, and Poly Real Estate Group Co Ltd rose 5.44 percent to 10.47 yuan.

Meanwhile Tokyo stocks fell yesterday after hitting their highest for over two months in the previous session. Data showed Japan’s economy was flat at zero percent quarter-on-quarter, missing economists’ hopes for a 0.2 percent rise in the April-June period.

But markets in Hong Kong, Sydney, Wellington and Kuala Lumpur climbed.


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