SHANGHAI, Oct 19 (Reuters) - China stocks ended Monday flat as afternoon profit-taking rolled back morning gains on third-quarter growth data showing a further gradual slowdown in economic activity but no signs of a hard landing.
The CSI300 index of the largest listed companies in Shanghai and Shenzhen was unchanged at 3,534.18, while the Shanghai Composite Index slipped 0.1 percent, to 3,386.70 points.
In the third quarter, China’s economic growth cooled to 6.9 percent, slightly better than expected but still the weakest pace since the global financial crisis, reinforcing views that policymakers will roll out more support measures.
No panic was seen among mainland investors as the slowdown had long been priced in, analysts said.
Traders said that Monday’s profit-taking was natural after the main indexes jumped roughly 6 percent last week, amid signs that some investors tiptoed back into the market after a 40 percent plunge in the summer.
Brokerages shares were the clear winners the recent market strength, with companies including Western Securities , Sinolink Securities and Guoyuan Securities rising sharply on Monday.
But many other sectors lost ground on profit-taking, reflecting concerns that the rebound could be losing steam as the economy is still struggling. (Reporting by Samuel Shen and Pete Sweeney; Editing by Richard Borsuk)