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Uncertainty sends market tumbling

SHANGHAI'S key stock index tumbled nearly 4 percent today amid uncertainty in the market despite the announcement of industry stimulus plans.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index dropped 3.87 percent, or 85.32 points, to close at 2,121.25 points.

Most shares in the 877 listed companies in the local bourse fell with only 34 gaining while two were unchanged. Turnover shrank to 127.4 billion yuan (US$18.74 billion), compared with 131.7 billion yuan the previous trading day.

The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks the smaller domestic market, lost 6.12 percent to close at 689.92 points.

Bank of Communications was off 2 percent to 5.38 yuan. China Construction Bank dipped 2.4 percent to 4.06 yuan. China Merchants Bank Co, the nation's fifth-largest bank by market value, plunged 4.36 percent to 14.27 yuan. Bank of China lowered 1.86 percent to 3.17 yuan. Shanghai Pudong Development Bank inched up 0.7 percent to 17.21 yuan.

Metal producers also fell despite the government saying it would take steps to boost domestic demand for nonferrous metals and "strictly control" capacity expansion with an industry stimulus plan.

Jiangxi Copper Co, China's biggest producer of the metal, retreated 5.7 percent to 17.2 yuan. Aluminum Corp of China Ltd, the nation's biggest maker of the lightweight metal, also known as Chalco, eased 3.18 percent to 10.06 yuan.

China Petroleum & Chemical Corp, Asia's biggest oil refiner, has asked its refineries to boost gasoline output after inventories fell and demand climbed, the company said in a statement. Its shares advanced 1.49 percent to 8.19 yuan. PetroChina, the biggest component index, slid 1.55 percent to 10.97 yuan.

China Railway Group Ltd, the nation's biggest construction company by total assets, said it has secured contracts worth 22.6 billion yuan to build railways and tunnels in the country. The stock declined 1.1 percent to 5.39 yuan.

Huaneng Power International Inc, a unit of China's biggest electricity generator, said it raised 5 billion yuan selling one-year bonds to boost its capital, reduce finance costs and fund production. The stock slumped 3.39 percent to 7.97 yuan.


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