China Stock Market May Test Resistance At 3,200 Points

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( - The China stock market picked up just a single point on Thursday, but that was enough to snap the four-day losing streak in which it had given away more than 100 points or 3.2 percent. The Shanghai Composite Index remains just above the 3,170-point plateau, and the market is looking at another green light on Friday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat thanks to positive earnings news, although falling oil prices may cap the upside. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian markets are tipped to follow suit.

The SCI finished barely higher on Thursday as gains from the property stocks were capped by weakness from the resource plays and a mixed performance from the financial sector.

Among the actives, Agricultural Bank of China collected 0.31 percent, while Bank of China shed 0.57 percent, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China lost 0.21 percent, Vanke added 0.49 percent, Gemdale climbed 1.12 percent, PetroChina skidded 1.41 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) eased 0.17 percent and Zijin Mining dropped 1.72 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as stocks moved higher on Thursday following a few sessions of directionless trade.

The Dow added 174.22 points or 0.9 percent to 20,578.71, while the NASDAQ jumped 53.74 points or 0.9 percent to 5,916.78 and the S&P gained 17.67 points or 0.8 percent to 2,355.84.

The rally followed solid earnings news, with American Express ( AXP ) and KeyCorp (KEY) beating the street, although eBay ( EBAY ) provided disappointing guidance and Verizon (VZ) saw earnings that missed expectations.

In economic news, the Labor Department saw a bigger than expected increase in initial jobless claims in the week ended April 15. Also, the Philadelphia Federal Reserve noted a slowdown in regional manufacturing activity in April.

Crude oil futures fell for a fourth straight session Thursday, but held above the psychologically important $50 mark. June WTI oil settled at $50.71/bbl, down 14 cents or 0.3 percent while May WTI oil fell 17 cents or 0.3 percent to $50.27/bbl. Soaring U.S. production continued to offset OPEC's supply quota plan.

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This article appears in: Politics , World Markets , US Markets , Oil , Stocks
Referenced Symbols: ACGBY , AXP , BACHY , EBAY , IDCBY

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