SHANGHAI: China stocks rallied on Thursday as expectations of further policy measures to aid the economy led to gains across the board.
** The blue-chip CSI300 index ended up 1.6 percent, at 3,219.69 points, while the Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.2 percent to 2,634.05 points.
** Infrastructure firms jumped as state media reported on Wednesday that the government has tweaked its priorities to focus more on infrastructure, exports and fighting water pollution while slowing efforts to reduce capacity in coal and steel industries.
** China’s leaders are set to hold the Central Economic Work Conference, which typically takes place in December. As economic growth softens, analysts forecast strong policy support to prop up growth.
** “It may happen over the weekend, as we are drawing closer to Dec. 18,” the anniversary of a Chinese leadership meeting 40 years ago, which set the course for reform and opening up, said Cao Xuefeng, head of research at Huaxi Securities in Chengdu.
** “People have been focusing on the conference”, said Zhang Gang, a Shanghai-based analyst at Central Securities.
** Expectations are also high for further monetary easing, analysts at Guotai Junan Securities said in a memo on Thursday. “As the U.S. Federal Reserve slows down in raising rates, and as inflation moderates in China, there will be more room for policies like further cut to reserve requirement ratio (RRR).”
** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 0.82 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed up 0.99 percent.
** At 07:02 GMT, the yuan was quoted at 6.8684 per U.S. dollar, 0.16 percent firmer than the previous close of 6.8793.
** The largest percentage gainers in the main Shanghai Composite index were Sichuan Languang Development Co Ltd , up 10.09 percent, followed by Asia Cuanon Technology Shanghai Co Ltd, gaining 10.04 percent and Center International Group Co Ltd, up by 10.01 percent.
** The largest percentage losses in the Shanghai index were Suzhou Jin Hong Shun Auto Parts Co Ltd down 6.4 percent, followed by RoadMainT Co Ltd losing 5.56 percent and Shanghai Fukong Interactive Entertainment Co Ltd down by 4.89 percent.