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March 2, 2010

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Home » Business » Finance

Wen remarks push stocks up

SHANGHAI'S key stock index climbed more than 1 percent to its highest close in five weeks yesterday as Premier Wen Jiabao reiterated the government will continue with a proactive monetary policy and also pledged to manage inflation firmly.

The Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.18 percent, or 35.90 points, to end at 3,087.84, the highest since January 25. Turnover was 131.3 billion yuan (US$19.2 billion) yesterday.

Wen told an online chat organized by two major state-owned portals on Saturday that the government still needs an appropriately loose monetary policy to maintain a stable and relatively rapid economic growth while also keeping an eye on inflationary pressure.

"I believe we can keep a stable and relatively fast economic growth while controlling prices at a reasonable level," Premier Wen said.

China's Purchasing Manager's Index fell to a seasonally adjusted 52 in February from 55.8 in January, easing risks of overheating in the fast-growing economy, the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing said in a statement yesterday. It's the 12th consecutive month that the reading is above 50 which means manufacturing activity is expanding.

"The market will remain rather strong despite some fluctuations around 3,100 points ahead of the National People's Congress meeting set to begin on Friday," Kaiyuan Securities wrote.

Heavily weighted steel makers and oil producers were among the gainers. Baoshan Iron and Steel Co, China's biggest steel maker, gained 1.99 percent to 8.20 yuan and PetroChina edged up 0.46 percent to 13.06 yuan.

Copper suppliers rose on concerns the metal's output might be disrupted by the Chilean earthquake, pushing up commodity prices.

Jiangxi Copper jumped by the daily limit of 10 percent to 38.54 yuan. Yunnan Copper Co also surged 10 percent to 28.05 yuan.


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