SHANGHAI: Chinese stocks closed lower on Friday after consumer price data suggested domestic demand is still under pressure, although export data was better than expected.
Hong Kong shares also slipped, dragged down by tech stocks. China’s blue-chip CSI300 Index closed down 1.1%, while the Shanghai Composite Index slipped 0.6%. Hong Kong’s benchmark Hang Seng Index dropped 2.3%. For the week, the CSI300 Index lost 0.7%, while the Hang Seng Index added 1.7%.
China’s consumer prices were flat in September, while factory-gate prices shrank at a slower pace, official data showed on Friday, indicating deflationary pressures persist in the economy.
The data suggested that China’s domestic demand, and thus economic recovery, is still not solid and needs more policy support, UBS analysts wrote in a note. Consumer stocks fell broadly, with liquor and tourism shares leading the decline.
Meanwhile, China’s exports for September shrank 6.2% from a year earlier, while imports also declined 6.2%, both contracting at a slower pace. Export data came in better than a Reuters poll forecast of a fall of 7.6%.
Chinese stocks were still under pressure after the media reported that the country is considering creating a state-backed stabilization fund to shore up confidence in its equity markets.
While most sectors declined, banking stocks held up well, after Beijing’s state fund bought shares of the country’s “Big Four” lenders.