March 29, 2019 / 4:36 AM / 6 months ago

China stocks jump on opening-up pledge, trade hopes

* SSEC +2.4 pct, CSI300 +3.0 pct, HSI +0.7 pct

* China pledges to expand financial market opening

* U.S., China resume trade talks in Beijing after ‘productive working dinner’

SHANGHAI, March 29 (Reuters) - China stock jumped on Friday as investors cheered Beijing’s pledge to further liberalise financial markets, and on renewed hopes of progress in U.S.-China trade talks.

** The CSI300 index rose 3.0 percent, to 3,840.84, at the end of the morning session, while the Shanghai Composite Index gained 2.4 percent, to 3,065.75.

** China will sharply expand market access for foreign banks and securities and insurance companies, especially in its financial services sector, Premier Li Keqiang said on Thursday, as senior U.S. officials arrived in Beijing for more trade talks.

** China has pledged to further open its massive financial markets to foreign investors amid a trade war with the United States. Foreign businesses have long complained that liberalisation has been too narrow and implementation spotty.

** The CSI300 financials index rose 3.7 percent by the lunch break.

** Hopes of progress in Sino-U.S. trade talks also lifted sentiment.

** The mood was brightened after U.S. officials said China has made proposals in trade talks with the United States on a range of issues that go further than it has before, including on forced technology transfer.

** U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Friday he had a “productive working dinner” the previous night in Beijing, kicking off a day of talks aimed at resolving the bitter trade dispute between the world’s two largest economies.

** Sectors spiked across the board, led by consumer firms.

** The CSI300 consumer staples index surged 6.1 percent to the highest level since its launch in 2006, led by liquor giant Kweichow Moutai, which scaled a new peak after posting robust profit growth in 2018.

** “Chances are high that the A-share market has entered into an early stage of a bull run,” domestic brokerage Fortune Securities said in report.

** “Interest rate and reserve requirement ratio (RRR) cuts as well as supply-side reforms in the financial sector are expected if the downside pressure on China’s economy increases as a result of weaker-than-expected previous economic policy stimulus, or in case of relatively significant external shocks,” the brokerage added.

** In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index added 0.7 percent, to 28,976.44, while the Hong Kong China Enterprises Index gained 0.8 percent, to 11,388.07.

** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 0.55 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index was up 0.73 percent.

** The yuan was quoted at 6.7247 per U.S. dollar, 0.22 percent firmer than the previous close of 6.7398.

** The largest percentage gainers on the main Shanghai Composite index were Shanxi Coal International Energy Group Co Ltd, up 10.08 percent, followed by Shanghai Hongda Mining Co Ltd, gaining 10.06 percent, and China Galaxy Securities Co Ltd, up by 10.05 percent.

** The largest percentage losers on the Shanghai index were Orient International Enterprise Ltd, down 10.02 percent, followed by Zhejiang Golden Eagle Co Ltd, losing 9.98 percent, and Suzhou Jin Hong Shun Auto Parts Co Ltd , down by 9.96 percent.

** So far this year, the Shanghai stock index is up 20.09 percent, while China’s H-share index is up 11.6 percent. Shanghai stocks have risen 1.84 percent this month.

** The top gainers among H-shares were Air China Ltd , up 9.32 percent, followed by Haitong Securities Co Ltd, gaining 5.12 percent, and CITIC Securities Co Ltd , up by 5.06 percent.

** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were CRRC Corp Ltd, which has fallen 9.44 percent, China Communications Construction Co Ltd, which has lost 1.9 percent, and China Telecom Corp Ltd, down by 1.6 percent.

** About 21.26 billion shares have traded so far on the Shanghai exchange, roughly 53.9 percent of the market’s 30-day moving average of 39.42 billion shares a day. The volume traded was 28.81 billion as of the last full trading day.

** As of 04:17 GMT, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 23.35 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares.

Reporting by Luoyan Liu and John Ruwitch; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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