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Shanghai stocks rebound above 5,000 mark
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Shanghai stocks regained some lost ground and jumped above 5,000 points in the afternoon session today, driven by broad gains among blue chips.


The Shanghai Composite Index, which tracks both yuan-denominated A shares and hard-currency B shares, added 0.96 percent, or 47.97 points, to close at 5,032.13 at 3pm today.


The Shenzhen Composite Index, which covers the smaller mainland stock market, climbed 1.50 percent, or 18.86 points, to 1,272.14.


Gainers outnumbered losers 667 to 99 today while 80 were unchanged.


The Shanghai Index slumped 4.41 percent to close at 4,984.16 yesterday, its lowest close since August 22.


Rebounding stocks were helped as blue chips in sectors such as banks, property developers and airlines rose as the yuan hit a record high.


China Vanke, the nation's biggest listed property developer, added 1.03 percent, or 0.32 yuan (4 US cents), to 31.50 yuan while Shimao Property Co, a Shanghai developer, jumped 4.98 percent, or 0.94 yuan, to close at 19.80 yuan.


China Minsheng Banking Corp, the nation's only non-state bank listed in Shanghai, recovered 2.43 precent, or 0.38 yuan, to 16.01 yuan.


The Industrial & Commercial Bank of China, the country's biggest lender, gained 1.80 percent, or 0.14 yuan, to 7.90 yuan. The bank will be allowed to buy as much as 49 percent of Thailand's ACL Bank Pcl when a new law comes into effect, the Thai-language Krungthep Turakij newspaper said, citing Finance Minister Chalongphob Sussangkarn.


China's yuan rose beyond 7.4 to the dollar for the first time today since a link to the US currency was scrapped in 2005.


The currency advanced 0.22 percent, the biggest gain in two weeks, to 7.3983 against the dollar as of 10:45am in Shanghai, from 7.4257 a week ago, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trade System.


Airlines also made strong rebounds in the afternoon session today, led by China Southern Airlines Co, which gained the most in three weeks.


China Southern Airlines Co, the nation's largest carrier by fleet size, soared 10 percent, or 2.13 yuan, to 23.44 yuan. The Guangzhou-based carrier's Hong Kong-listed shares rose 4.3 percent to HK$8.41.


Insurers also gained today after big losses yesterday.


China Life, the world's largest insurer by market value, inched up 0.77 percent, or 0.44 yuan, to 57.55 yuan. The Beijing-based insurer reported third-quarter investment income of 20 billion yuan.


Ping An, partly-owned by HSBC Holdings Plc, climbed 1.59 percent, or 1.70 yuan, to 108.59 yuan. The insurer said last month its profit for the three months ended September 30 more than quadrupled as stock market gains helped the insurer earn 17 billion yuan in investment income.


The Shanghai Composite Index has gained 83 percent this year even with recent corrections.

Premier Wen Jiabao said earlier this week that China needed to prevent an asset bubble from forming in the stock market.


(Shanghai Daily November 23, 2007)


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