Tuesday, December 6

China stocks ends lower as COVID worries, Fed hawkish tone weighs


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SHANGHAI — China stocks closed down on Friday, tracking cautious mood in regional markets amid concerns of aggressive US tightening and domestic COVID-19 outbreaks.

** The blue-chip CSI 300 Index fell 0.5% at close, while the Shanghai Composite Index declined 0.6%.

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** Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index and the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index both slipped 0.3%.

** Most Asian markets were rangebound, after US Federal Reserve officials fired more warning shots on interest rates.

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** China plans to speed up COVID-19 vaccinations, the head of China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention said on Thursday.

** “The messages from today’s meeting add conviction to our view that the top leadership is preparing for an exit from three years of zero-COVID policy, but medical preparation remains a near-term bottleneck,” Goldman Sachs analysts said in a note.

** However, China’s daily coronavirus cases had surged to more than 20,000 in recent days, challenging plans to ease strict movement curbs that had throttled the economy.

** “Recent worsening of the COVID situation in many cities has led to tighter COVID restrictions and added downward pressure to near-term growth,” Goldman Sachs added.

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** Semiconductor companies dropped 2.9%, and tourism shares lost 1.9%.

** Separately, China is expected to keep benchmark lending rates unchanged for the third straight month on Monday, a Reuters survey showed.

** China’s video games regulator on Thursday granted publishing licenses to 70 online games, including titles belonging to Tencent Holdings Ltd, NetEase Inc and other developers.

** Tech giants listed in Hong Kong added 0.6%, with gaming company NetEase up 3.7%.

** For the week, China’s CSI 300 Index edged up 0.3%, while the Hang Seng benchmark gained 3.8%.

** China’s COVID policy re-calibration and announcements of measures to support the housting sector boosted sentiment, said Morgan Stanley analysts, but “execution is key to support sustainable sentiment and fundamental earnings recovery.” (Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom; Editing -Phillips)



financialpost.com

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