January 30, 2019 / 4:26 AM / 20 days ago

China, HK shares climb on consumption support, trade talks

* SSEC +0.1 pct, CSI300 +0.2 pct; HSI +0.3 pct

* Govt renews efforts to boost consumption as growth slows

* Chinese officials in Washington for high-level trade talks

HONG KONG, Jan 30 (Reuters) - China and Hong Kong stocks rose on Wednesday after the Chinese government stepped up its efforts to boost growth and as Beijing and Washington cracked on with trade negotiations. ** At the midday break, the Shanghai Composite index was up 0.1 percent at 2,596.65 points. ** China’s blue-chip CSI300 index was up 0.2 percent, with its financial sector sub-index higher by 0.5 percent, healthcare shares up 0.2 percent, and the information technology sector up 0.1 percent. ** To spur growth, China on Tuesday unveiled a flurry of measures aimed at boosting sales of items ranging from cars and appliances to information services. The announcement came as 23 Chinese provinces cut their annual growth targets in 2019, up from just 17 the year before. ** China’s economic growth is still relatively strong among global peers, Eric Moffett, a Hong Kong-based portfolio manager at T Rowe Price, said in a note. “A-shares are at crisis-level valuations for an economy that is still growing faster than most places around the world” due to trade war-triggered “indiscriminate stock selling by local investors”, Moffett said. ** Chinese Vice Premier Liu He and central bank Governor Yi Gang are in Washington for a new round of trade negotiations with the United States, which will include a meeting with President Donald Trump. ** U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin emphasised ahead of the meeting that the recent indictment of Chinese technology company Huawei Technologies Co Ltd is “separate” from the trade talks. ** As negotiations resume, domestic developments will be the main driver for the Chinese stock market in the coming sessions, analysts at Guotai Junan Securities wrote in a memo. “The core factors influencing risk appetite are falling (corporate) profits and blockages in credit transmission,” they said. ** Chinese markets will be closed for Lunar New Year holidays between Feb. 4 and 10. ** Chinese H-shares listed in Hong Kong rose 0.2 percent, while the benchmark Hang Seng Index was up 0.3 percent at 27,610.42 points. ** The smaller Shenzhen index was flat at midday and the start-up board ChiNext Composite index was higher by 0.1 percent. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 0.3 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index was down 0.3 percent. ** The yuan was quoted at 6.7168 per U.S. dollar, 0.23 percent firmer than the previous close of 6.7320. ** The largest percentage gainers on the main Shanghai Composite index were Bomin Electronics Co Ltd, Zhejiang Jiecang Linear Motion Technology Co Ltd, and Zhejiang Xinneng Photovoltaic Technology Co Ltd, all up by 10 percent. ** As of midday, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 17.56 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. ** The Shanghai stock index is above its 50-day moving average and below its 200-day moving average. ** In Hong Kong, the sub-index of the Hang Seng index tracking energy shares rose 0.6 percent, while the IT sector rose 0.1 percent.

Reporting by Noah Sin; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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