Steady Start Seen For China Stock Market

(RTTNews) - The China stock market has finished lower in three straight sessions, sliding almost 40 points or 1.3 percent along the way. The Shanghai Composite Index now rests just above the 3,000-point plateau although bargain hunting may give it a lift on Friday.

The global forecast for Asian markets is mixed and flat ahead of U.S. employment data due out later today. The European markets were little changed and the U.S. markets were closed for Independence Day and the Asian markets figure to see little movement.

The SCI finished modestly lower on Thursday as losses from the financials and insurance companies were mitigated by support from the oil companies and properties.

For the day, the index lost 10.01 points or 0.33 percent to finish at 3,005.25 after trading between 2,991.91 and 3,024.50. The Shenzhen Composite Index fell 8.78 points or 0.55 percent to end at 1,591.24.

Among the actives, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China collected 0.18 percent, while China Construction Bank eased 0.13 percent, China Merchants Bank dipped 0.19 percent, China Life Insurance dropped 0.96 percent, Ping An Insurance sank 0.84 percent, PetroChina added 0.29 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) climbed 1.30 percent, China Shenhua Energy shed 0.68 percent, Gemdale advanced 1.34 percent, Poly Developments soared 2.10 percent, China Vanke jumped 1.30 percent, CITIC Securities rose 0.33 percent and Bank of China and Baoshan Iron were unchanged.

There is no lead from Wall Street today, although the major European markets ended subdued on Thursday with investors making some cautious moves.

The sentiment remained positive amid Fed rate cut hopes and on news that top representatives from the United States and China are arranging to resume talks next week to try to resolve a year-long trade war between the world's two largest economies.

Investors will be looking ahead to closely watched non-farm payroll data later today, with forecasts suggesting an increase of 163,000 jobs. A weaker reading would lend further support to the argument for a rate cut.

Crude oil prices fell on Thursday amid reports of an increase in production. West Texas Intermediate sank $0.67 or 1.17 percent to $56.67.
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