[SHANGHAI] China's blue-chip CSI300 index jumped to a four-month high on Monday, led by broad rallies in real estate, banking and consumer plays as investors scooped up modestly-priced big caps.
CSI300, which tracks the largest listed companies in Shanghai and Shenzhen, rose 2.6 per cent, to 3,865.96, the highest close since Aug 19.
The Shanghai Composite Index gained 1.8 per cent, to 3,642.47 points, a four-week high.
Analysts said the rally was inspired by a recent wave of share acquisitions by yield-seeking insurance firms, highlighted most recently by the high-profile battle for control of Chinese developer China Vanke Co.
Vanke kicked off plans for a "major restructuring", after Chairman Wang Shi said he did not welcome Shenzhen Jushenghua Co, the property and insurance group which recently became its largest shareholder.
Vanke shares had soared before they were suspended from trading pending an announcement of restructuring details. "Investors are looking for the next Vanke," said Chang Chengwei, analyst at brokerage Hengtai Futures. "They're looking for companies with low valuations, high dividends, and healthy cash flows, hoping they would become insurers' next target." Bosera Asset Management said on Monday that insurers could potentially channel more money into the stock market, and advised investors to increase allocation into big caps.
Stocks partially owned by insurers, including Gemdale Corp and Xinjiang Goldwind Science & Technology Co surged their 10 per cent upward limit.
Investors also bought into blue chips such as Gree Electric Appliances and Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group, betting they could also become acquisition targets due to their fragmented shareholding structures.
However, some investors questioned the sustainability of the blue-chip rally, citing liquidity constraints and economic weakness.