July 16, 2018 / 7:24 AM / in 3 months

China stocks end down on soft economy data

* Shanghai stocks lower, blue-chip CSI300 index down

* Gains in Shanghai stocks led by Baotailong New Materials

* China’s A-shares are at a 19.79 pct premium over H-shares

SHANGHAI, July 16 (Reuters) - China stocks ended down on Monday, after data showed the country’s economy expanded at a slower pace in the second quarter, while a trade war with the United States threatened to hit exports. ** The blue-chip CSI300 index fell 0.6 percent, to 3,472.09 points, while the Shanghai Composite Index closed down 0.6 percent at 2,814.04 points. ** Banking and real estate firms led the decline, with indexes tracking those firms down 2.1 percent and 2.3 percent, respectively. ** China’s economy expanded at a slower pace in the second quarter as Beijing’s efforts to contain debt hurt activity, while June factory output growth weakened to a two-year low in a worrying sign for investment and exporters as a trade war with the United States intensified. ** “They need to slow financial deleveraging slightly and to turn their focus more on growth-supportive measures, for example, increasing liquidity through (bank reserve requirement) cuts,” said Iris Pang, Greater China Economist at ING in Hong Kong. ** China’s fiscal policy has “ample room” to support the economy, the central bank’s chief researcher said in an opinion column on Friday, adding that the policy has not been active enough. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was weaker by 0.41 percent while Japan’s Nikkei index closed up 1.85 percent. ** At 07:03 GMT, the yuan was quoted at 6.6875 per U.S. dollar, 0.18 percent firmer than the previous close of 6.6993. ** The largest percentage gainers in the main Shanghai Composite index were Baotailong New Materials Co Ltd up 10.07 percent, followed by Triumph Science & Technology Co Ltd gaining 10.07 percent and Veken Technology Co Ltd up by 10.05 percent. ** The largest percentage losses in the Shanghai index were Anji Foodstuff Co Ltd down 10.02 percent, followed by Dynagreen Environmental Protection Group Co Ltd losing 10.01 percent and Fujian Furi Electronics Co Ltd down by 10.01 percent. ** So far this year, the Shanghai stock index is down 14.9 percent, the CSI300 has fallen 13.9 percent while China’s H-share index listed in Hong Kong is down 8.9 percent. Shanghai stocks have declined 1.18 percent this month. ** About 10.78 billion shares were traded on the Shanghai exchange, roughly 82.4 percent of the market’s 30-day moving average of 13.07 billion shares a day. The volume in the previous trading session was 11.77 billion. ** As of 07:03 GMT, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 19.79 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. ** The Shanghai stock index is below its 50-day moving average and below its 200-day moving average. (Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Sunil Nair)

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