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SHANGHAI: China shares dropped on Monday, weighed down by materials and transport stocks, as worries over policy tightening persisted on expectations of upbeat economic data due later this month.

The blue-chip CSI300 index fell 1.7%, to 4,947.75, while the Shanghai Composite index shed 1.1% to 3,412.95.

Leading the declines, the CSI300 materials index and the CSI300 transport index slumped 3.9% and 4.1%, respectively.

Courier giant S.F. Holding Co Ltd fell 9.4%, following a 10% drop on Friday after flagging losses for the first quarter.

China’s first quarter economic growth data probably would beat market expectations, which could raise worries over a quick tightening of monetary policy, Huaan Securities said in a report.

The market could also encounter challenges as much stronger-than-expected PPI could lead to marginal changes in monetary policy, the brokerage added.

Ongoing Sino-US tensions also affected sentiment.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday the United States is concerned about China’s aggressive actions against Taiwan and warned it would be a “serious mistake” for anyone to try to change the status quo in the Western Pacific by force.

Foreign investors on Monday purchased a net 6.4 billion yuan ($976.71 million) worth of A-shares as they hunted for bargains, according to Refinitiv data.—Reuters

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