Chinese stocks close higher

Beijing, March 23 (IANS) Chinese stocks ended a day of fluctuations on a high note as securities shares lifted the benchmark Shanghai index above 3,000 points.

The Shanghai Composite Index climbed 0.35 percent to close at 3,009.96 points on Wednesday while the smaller Shenzhen index closed 0.95 percent higher at 10,442.38 points, Xinhua news agency reported.

The ChiNext Index, which tracks China’s NASDAQ-style board of growth enterprises, gained 1.68 percent to close at 2,259.11 points.

Total turnover on the two bourses was down to 670 billion yuan ($103 billion), compared to 750 billion yuan the previous day.

Securities firms recovered losses made in morning trading near the closing bell, with Western Securities jumping by the daily limit of 10 percent in the last hour of trading.

CITIC Securities, China’s largest brokerage, climbed 2 percent in the last 30 minutes.

The Shanghai index saw a seven-day winning streak before retreating slightly on Tuesday, which analysts said was mainly due to profit taking.

Such pressure will be increasingly high once the Shanghai index is above the psychological 3,000-point mark and across-the-board gains will still require stronger economic fundamentals, said Shenwan Hongyuan Securities.

Data showed that 527,000 investors opened accounts last week, up 11 percent month on month, indicating recovery in market sentiment.

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