Blue chips push stocks to new high

By Dong Zhixin (
Updated: 2007-03-26 15:44

An investor smiles before an electronic board showing stock information at a securities firm in Xiamen, East China's Fujian Province March 20, 2007. [newsphoto]

China's main stock index rallied to new highs Monday for the fourth consecutive session, extending this year's gains to nearly 20 percent.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index closed up 1.58 percent to 3,122.81, the first ever close above the level of 3,100. The index has grown 16.72 percent this year after surging more than 130 percent last year.

The Shenzhen Composite Index ended 2.04 percent higher at 833.57. The Shanghai and Shenzhen 300 Index finished up 1.76 percent at 2,764.03.

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Blue chips pushed up the indexes. Ping An Insurance gained 1.73 percent to 45.94 yuan while its peer China Life rose 1.35 percent to 34.46 yuan. The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the country's biggest lender, increased 0.78 percent to 5.19 yuan.

China Petroleum and Chemical Corporation, also known as Sinopec, went up 1.05 percent to 9.60 yuan. Shanghai International Port Group surged 4.64 percent to 8.57 yuan while Baosteel Corp. Ltd. rose 3.19 percent to 9.39 yuan. 

The repeated hitting of new highs found strength from the bullish sentiment of the Chinese investors who threw themselves into lines to open accounts at securities firms.

A total of 128,047 A-share accounts were opened Friday, the 10th consecutive trading day that saw an addition of more than 100,000 accounts, according to statistics from the China Securities Depository and Clearing Corporation Limited.

That compared with an average of 4,700 newly added accounts each day in 2005 when the market was in a bearish run.

Friday also witnessed the opening of over 45,000 fund accounts after some 130,000 ones were added on March 19.

By 3:00 pm Friday, the number of accounts in the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges has topped 86.2 million, according to the statistics.

Trading was heavy on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges. A total of 12.27 billion shares were traded in Shanghai, at a volume of 109.83 billlion yuan. In Shenzhen, the turnover hit 57.73 billon yuan, with 0.97 billion shares changing hands.

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