China shares snap six-day losing streak, up 5.35%
China's shares closed up a final 5.35 percent on
Wednesday, snapping a six-session losing streak as investors piled into
large-caps on hopes the central government would unveil market-friendly policies
ahead of the Lunar New Year.
Markets would be closed from February 7 to February 15 for the Lunar New Year holiday, and listed firms would then head into their peak 2004 corporate reporting season.
"Everybody was talking about possible market-boosting steps, so investors rushed to pick up blue chips such as auto stocks, doubling the trading volume compared with past days," said Wu Ang, an analyst at CITIC Securities.
Shanghai Automotive Co. Ltd., the country's top car maker that owns a fifth of General Motors' auto plant in the city, surged its 10 percent daily limit to 5.65 yuan.
And Chongqing Changan Automobile Co., Ford's main car-making partner in China, jumped the same amount to finish at 5.76 yuan.
Autos was one of the most heavily hit sectors during a nine-month market slump, as Beijing's credit curbs slowed a once red-hot auto industry in 2004.
Shanghai Auto is still down by nearly half since the start of 2004, underperforming the market.
The index has now fallen 1.1 percent since the start of 2005, after a 15 percent dive in 2004 that made it Asia's worst performer that year, hit by economic-cooling steps, corporate scandals and a bulging pipeline of stock sales.
In the latest, Hong Kong-listed Huadian Power, China's third-largest electricity producer, would list shares issued via a $233 million domestic IPO in Shanghai on Thursday.
Brokers said they had heard few details of what the supportive policies would be -- an indication of the speculative nature of Wednesday's gains.
"The rise today was very much propelled by technical buying," said trader Lu Wei at East Asia Securities. "If the government fails to announce any policies soon to boost the market as expected, the technical rebound will fizzle out."