China: Stocks hold up after Fed hike relief rally

[SHANGHAI] China stocks held nearly steady on Friday, capping a dramatic week that witnessed a strong relief rally in the previous session following an expected rise in US interest rates.

Investors are now refocusing on economic fundamentals, with a key central government economic meeting that starts on Friday likely to offer the market fresh cues for directions.

The blue-chip CSI300 index rose 0.3 per cent, to 3,767.91, while the Shanghai Composite Index was unchanged at 3,578.96 points.

For the week, CSI300 was up 4.4 per cent, while the SSEC gained 4.2 per cent, their best weekly performance in more than a month.

"Yesterday, investors were excited that the Fed finally raised rates, and global markets all rose. But when you cool down, you find there's really nothing to cheer about, as US rate rises would only lead to capital outflows," said Gu Yongtao, analyst at Cinda Securities Co.

Results from a private survey of Chinese firms showed that China's economy was plagued by pervasive weakness in the fourth quarter, raising questions about the veracity of stronger-than-expected official activity data this month.

But on Friday, property stocks in China had another day of solid performance on fresh signs of recovery in the struggling sector. Data showed China's home prices rose for the second straight month in November from a year earlier.

Shares of China Vanke Co Ltd jumped by their 10 per cent daily limit for the second day to an eight-year high, as a spat between chairman Wang Shi and its top shareholder over control of the homebuilder fuelled speculation of a bidding war.

After the lunch break, Vanke suspended trading in its shares, saying the company was planning additional share sales.


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