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Chinese shares rise for third day, regional shares gain

Graphics shows the central parity rate of the Chinese currency RMB against five major currencies on Jan. 18, 2010, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trading System.(Xinhua/Zhang Liyun)

BEIJING, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- Chinese shares rose for the third consecutive trading day Monday on upbeat Shanghai and Hainan stocks.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.4 percent, or 12.95 points, to close at 3,237.10 points.

The Shenzhen Component Index gained 0.73 percent, or 97.15 points, to close at 13,361.52 points.

Combined turnover totaled 278.28 billion yuan (40.76 billion U.S. dollars), expanding from 258.9 billion yuan the previous trading day.

Gainers outnumbered losers by 716 to 156 in Shanghai and 634 to 188 in Shenzhen.

Shanghai stocks got a boost after the executive committee for the Shanghai Expo said Monday at a press conference that preparations for the World Expo 2010 Shanghai China were going according to plan, and were in the final stages.

Shanghai Shentong Metro Co. rose 9.97 percent to 14.45 yuan. Shanghai International Airport Co. advanced 7.27 percent to 20.51 yuan. Shanghai Oriental Pearl Co. climbed 6.68 percent to 13.25 yuan.

They were also shored up by the address from Chinese President Hu Jintao that called for more efforts to promote independent innovation and upgrading of the industrial structure during his four-day inspection tour of Shanghai ending Sunday.

Hainan-related shares were boosted after the provincial government announced late Friday the commencement of establishing the island as a top international tourist destination.

Lawton Development Co., a local company engaged in hotel operation and management, rose by the daily limit of 10 percent to 8.75 yuan. Hainan Airlines rose 5.41 percent to 7.40 yuan.

The central government announced on Jan. 4 a plan to build the island into a top international tourist destination by 2020. The specific plan is under study and scheduled to be submitted to the National Development and Reform Commission in March or April.

The approval of the Hainan plan was just a beginning, and stocks related to Hainan would further rise as details come out, said Hu Xiaohui, analyst from Datong Securities.

Airline shares performed well after China Eastern Airlines, the country's third-largest carrier by fleet size, said the results of the company would return to profit in 2009 from loss in 2008.

"The company's result will see a large annual increase in 2009," the company said in a statement to the Shanghai Stock Exchange on Saturday.

Share prices of the carrier rose 5.06 percent to 6.65 yuan. Air China, the largest carrier, gained 4.62 percent to 11.09 yuan.

Zhang Qi, analyst with Orient Securities, said 2010 would be a better year for air companies on rising domestic demand and a recovery of the global air market.

Wu Li, analyst with Guotai Junan Securities said the Shanghai Expo would also help drive up demand for air travel and bring benefits to air companies.


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