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US optimism helps market rise 1%

SHANGHAI'S key stock index rose nearly 1 percent today, led by lenders, property developers and oil refiners, following hikes in United States markets.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index added 0.9 percent, or 23.9 points, to close at 2,676.68 points. Gainers outnumbered losers 544 to 278 while 29 remained unchanged. Turnover rose to 148.28 billion yuan (US$21.81 billion) from 117.76 billion yuan.

The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks the smaller domestic market, was up 0.89 percent to close at 900.15 points.

The petrochemical sector gained after a detailed rejuvenation plan was announced yesterday. China plans to increase annual oil refining volume by 18 percent in three years, boosting state fuel reserves and exploration as demand rises in the long term.

PetroChina, the biggest component index, climbed 1.39 percent to 13.15 yuan. Sinopec, Asia's largest refiner, gained 0.96 percent to 10.56 yuan. Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical Co advanced 5.03 percent to 7.73 yuan.

Gemdale Corporation surged 3.16 percent to 16.66 yuan. Poly Real Estate Group Co soared 4.14 percent to 22.87 yuan. The Shanghai Lujiazui Finance & Trade Zone added 0.12 percent to 25.22 yuan.

Lenders were strong. Bank of Communications Co gained 1.25 percent to 7.27 yuan. Shanghai Pudong Development Bank Co hiked 3.22 percent to 25.99 yuan. China Merchants Bank Co increased 0.53 percent to 17.12 yuan.


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