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Chinese shares fall slightly, led by coal and property sectors
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Chinese shares fell slightly Tuesday, led by coal and property sectors, as investors' sentiment weakened ahead of the three-day holiday starting from Thursday.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.82 percent, or 21.44 points to close at 2588.57. The Shenzhen Component Index was down 1.57 percent, or 159.86 points, to 10,022.30.

Combined turnover rose to 192.2 billion yuan (28.14 billion U.S. dollars) from 181.93 billion yuan the previous trading day.

The coal sector fell as the State Council, or Cabinet, said Monday it would impose taxes on those exploiting natural resources. The time schedule for the reform is unknown.

China Shenhua Energy, the largest coal producer, fell 3.26 percent to close at 25.19 yuan. The second largest, China Coal Energy, was down 4.22 percent to 11.13 yuan.

Datong Coal Industry slumped 6.63 percent to 33.54 yuan, and Pingdingshan Tianan Coal Mining 6.66 percent to close at 31.94 yuan.

The property sector fell as the State Council said it was preparing to impose "maintanance" taxes on house owners.

China Vanke, the largest property developer, fell 3.01 percent to 9.66 yuan. Gemdale Corp. slumped 5.2 percent to 15.31 yuan and the Poly Real Estate declined 2.54 percent to 21.14 yuan.

The banking sector fell slightly as media reported that new yuan-denominated loans extended by the four state-owned banks so far this month were at the same level as in April.

The new loans last month stood at 591.8 billion yuan.

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the largest lender by market value, declined 0.7 percent to 4.23 yuan. The Bank of China slid 0.85 percent to 3.5 yuan and the China Construction Bank was down 0.89 percent to 4.46 yuan.

PetroChina, the largest oil producer, fell 0.08 percent to 13.09 yuan after its market value overtook the U.S.-based ExxonMobil to become the world's largest company Monday.

Sinopec, the country's second largest oil producer, was down 1.55 percent to close at 10.14 yuan.

(Xinhua News Agency May 26, 2009)

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