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China stocks head for 2017's worst week

Apr 21 2017 09:13
Bloomberg News

Shanghai - Chinese shares headed for their biggest weekly loss of 2017, with increased regulatory scrutiny and a crackdown on leveraged trading sapping investor sentiment.

The Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.2% as of 08:27. The gauge is set for a 2.3% tumble this week, the most since mid-December, with mainland gauges of energy and materials companies leading the decline.

Stocks that rose after China’s announcement of a new economic zone in Xiongan were among the worst performers. Hesteel, China Fortune Land Development and Beijing Capital plunged at least 21% for the week.

China’s securities regulator has stepped up criticism of what it called disruptive trading behavior, with chief Liu Shiyu saying at the weekend the nation’s bourses should punish irregularities “without mercy.”

The A-share gauge has been the world’s worst-performing equity market over the past five days, with trust companies said to have been ordered to cut exposure to the property sector and the Shanghai securities regulator demanding a crackdown on illegal futures trading.

“The downward trend remains intact as regulators will likely maintain their strict stance over financial scrutiny," said Wu Kan, a Shanghai-based fund manager at Shanshan Finance. "The market can hardly avoid the impact from government policies.”

The ChiNext gauge of small-cap shares was little changed, poised for a weekly decline of 2%. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index rose 0.2%, trimming a weekly loss to 0.7%. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index climbed for a second day, adding 0.2%.

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equities  |  markets  |  china stocks

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