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China stocks end week higher; techs retreat ahead of reform measures

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SHANGHAI: China stocks ended higher on Friday and posted a weekly rise, as investors cheered a series of solid corporate earnings, though uncertainty over Sino-US trade talks kept a check on gains.

The blue-chip CSI300 index rose 0.9%, to 4,718.84, while the Shanghai Composite Index added 0.5% to 3,380.68.

For the week, CSI300 was up 0.3%, while SSEC climbed 0.6%.

Investors found some support from a series of strong first-half earnings from Chinese companies as Beijing ramped up stimulus support to revive an economy hammered by the COVID-19 crisis.

Bucking the broad strength, tech players lost ground for the week. The tech-heavy start-up board index and the STAR50 index dropped 1.4% and 2.4% respectively, as investors turned cautious ahead of the implementation of reforms measures for Shenzhen’s start-up board ChiNext.

The first batch of companies registered for listing on ChiNext under a revamped initial public offering (IPO) system will make their debuts on Aug. 24, the Shenzhen Stock Exchange said on Friday.

Investors need to further monitor the impact on market liquidity and risk appetite from the implementation of a registration-based IPO system for ChiNext, which could increase volatility and equities supply, Yuekai Securities noted in a report.

On Monday, China’s central bank injected 700 billion yuan ($101.32 billion) of MLF loans, alleviating concerns over liquidity tightening following more signs of economic recovery.

Market participants were also watching out for developments on trade talks between Washington and Beijing.

The Trump administration on Thursday declined to acknowledge any plans to meet with China over the Phase 1 trade deal after the commerce ministry in Beijing said bilateral talks would be held “in the coming days” to evaluate the agreement’s progress.

Chinese purchases of US goods are running well behind the pace needed to meet a first-year increase of $77 billion specified in the deal, according to official data. China, however, has increased the pace of farm product purchases in recent weeks.

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