Chinese shares cap year’s worst week on crackdown

Bloomberg

Sun, Apr 23, 2017 - Page 14

Chinese shares capped their biggest weekly loss of this year, with increased regulatory scrutiny and a crackdown on leveraged trading sapping investor sentiment.

The Shanghai Composite Index tumbled 2.3 percent this week, the most since the middle of December last year, with mainland gauges of energy and materials companies leading the decline.

Stocks that rose after China’s announcement of a new economic zone in Xiongan were among the worst performers.

China’s securities regulator has stepped up criticism of what it called disruptive trading behavior, with China Securities Regulatory Commission Chairman Liu Shiyu (劉士餘) saying at the weekend that the nation’s bourses should punish irregularities “without mercy.”

The A-share gauge has been the world’s worst-performing equity market over the past week, with trust companies said to have been ordered to cut exposure to the property sector and the Shanghai securities regulator demanding a crackdown on illegal futures trading.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.7 percent to 147.05, up 0.5 percent from last week’s 146.32.

The weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange on Friday added 84.72 points, or 0.88 percent, to close at 9,717.41 points, down 0.16 percent from last week’s 9,732.93.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index edged 0.1 percent lower at the close, extending a weekly loss to 0.9 percent.

The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index on Friday lost 0.1 percent.

Japan’s TOPIX rose 1.1 percent and Nikkei 225 added 1 percent.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index gained 0.6 percent and New Zealand’s S&P/NZX 50 Index edged up 0.1 percent.

South Korea’s KOSPI added 0.7 percent as the nation’s export figures for this month sent positive signs on the global economy.

Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.3 percent.

FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI added 0.8 percent and the Philippines Stock Exchange PSEi rose 0.2 percent.

Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh Stock Index was little changed. Thailand’s SET Index rose 0.3 percent and Jakarta Composite Index added 1 percent.

India’s SENSEX declined 0.4 percent.

Additional reporting by CNA