June 8, 2020 / 7:52 AM / in 24 days

China stocks gain as dismal trade data fuels stimulus hopes

SHANGHAI, June 8 (Reuters) - China stocks ended higher on Monday as poor domestic trade data reinforced hopes for further policy stimulus to shore up the coronavirus-stricken economy.

** At the close, the Shanghai Composite index was up 0.24% at 2,937.77.

** The blue-chip CSI300 index was up 0.52%, with its financial sector sub-index higher by 0.55%, the consumer staples sector up 0.35%, the real estate index up 1.14% and the healthcare sub-index down 1.39%.

** The smaller Shenzhen index ended unchanged and the start-up board ChiNext Composite index was weaker by 0.591%.

** China’s exports contracted in May as global coronavirus lockdowns continued to devastate demand, while a sharper-than-expected fall in imports pointed to mounting pressure on manufacturers as global growth stalls.

** The sombre trade readings for the world’s second-biggest economy could pile pressure on policymakers to roll out more support for a sector that is critical to the livelihoods of more than 180 million workers.

** The recovery of China’s domestic demand is relatively good, while pressure from external demand could persist, Zhou Yu, an analyst with Pacific Securities, said in a report.

** China will strengthen international cooperation in future COVID-19 clinical vaccine trials, building on earlier collaboration in vaccine development, the science and technology minister said on Sunday.

** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 0.22%, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed up 1.37%.

** At 0727 GMT, the yuan was quoted at 7.075 per U.S. dollar, 0.09% firmer than the previous close of 7.0812.

** As of 0727 GMT, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 26.22% over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. (Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Aditya Soni)

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