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China blue-chip stocks end lower on COVID woes, yuan weakness

September 5, 2022By Reuters

China’s blue-chip stocks closed lower on Monday, led by consumer staples amid tightening COVID-19 curbs in some big cities, while foreign investors also dumped Chinese shares as the yuan tumbled to a more than two-year low.

Shanghai stocks, meanwhile, closed higher on boost from energy companies.

** The blue-chip CSI 300 Index  lost 0.2% at close, while the Shanghai Composite Index ended higher 0.4%.

** The Hang Seng Index fell 1.2%, and the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index dropped 1.4%.

** China’s Shenzhen moved away from a weekend COVID-19 lockdown covering most parts of the city, while the southwestern metropolis of Chengdu extended its lockdown by three days for most of its 21.2 million residents.

** A strong rebound in China’s services sector eased slightly in August amid fresh COVID-19 flare-ups but business confidence rose to a nine-month high, a private survey showed.

** Other Asian markets and European stocks slid after Russia shut a major gas pipeline to Europe.

** Consumer staples lost 1.4% and healthcare companies declined 1.7%, while an energy crisis in Europe lifted Chinese energy shares by 5.3%.

** Foreign investors sold more than 7.6 billion yuan (USD 1.1 billion) of Chinese shares through the stock connect scheme, the most since Aug. 23.

** China’s yuan touched a more than two-year low against the dollar, pressured by broad greenback strength in the global market and a resurgence of COVID infections.

** Separately, a magnitude 6.8 earthquake struck China’s Sichuan on Monday, the strongest to hit the province since 2013.

** Tech giants listed in Hong Kong declined nearly 2%, with index heavyweights Meituan, Tencent and Alibaba down between 1.4% and 3%.

** Electric vehicle maker BYD Co  dropped 5.9% as Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc trimmed stake in the company for a second time following last week’s reduction.

(Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Maju Samuel and Uttaresh.V)

This article originally appeared on reuters.com

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