SSEC 1.5%, CSI300 1.8%, HSI 0.2%
Gains led by IT firms as U.S. eases Huawei restrictions
Xi Jinping visit boosts rare-earths companies
Yuan strengthens around 6.9 per dollar
SHANGHAI, May 21 (Reuters) - China stocks rose on Tuesday as the easing of U.S. trade restrictions on Chinese telecoms firm Huawei brought relief to investors, lifting sentiment battered by a bruising trade war between the world's two largest economies.
** At the midday break, the Shanghai Composite index .SSEC was up 1.52% at 2,914.22 points. China's blue-chip CSI300 index .CSI300 rose 1.8%.
** Chinese H-shares listed in Hong Kong .HSCE edged up 0.57% to 10,693.6, while the Hang Seng Index .HSI rose 0.22% to 27,848.79.
** Tuesday's gains follow the U.S. government temporarily easing trade restrictions imposed last week on China's Huawei Technologies Co Ltd [RIC:RIC:HWT.UL], a move aimed at minimising disruption for its customers. While marking a temporary reprieve, Huawei's founder, Ren Zhengfei, dismissed it and said that the tech firm had prepared for U.S. action.
** The easing of restrictions and Ren's comments boosted Huawei suppliers in Hong Kong and mainland China. A CSI sub-index tracking information technology companies .CSIINT gained 2.68%, and the info-tech sector in Hong Kong .HSCIIT added 1.18%.
** The CSI financial sector sub-index .CSI300FS climbed 1.54%, the consumer staples sector .CSI000912 rose 1.69%, the real estate index .CSI000952 gained 1.55% and the healthcare sub-index .CSI300HC jumped 1.82%.
** Companies in the rare-earths sector surged amid speculation that the materials might be used as countermeasures in the Sino-U.S. trade spat, after Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Jl Mag Rare-Earth Co Ltd 300748.SZ, a producer in southern China, on Monday. Jl Mag Rare-Earth jumped by the daily 10% limit on Monday and Tuesday, leading gains across the sector.
** The smaller Shenzhen index .SZSC was up 1.92% and the start-up board ChiNext Composite index .CNT was higher by 2.04%.
** Around the region, MSCI's Asia ex-Japan stock index .MIAPJ0000PUS was firmer by 0.35%, while Japan's Nikkei index .N225 dipped 0.08%.
** The yuan CNY=CFXS was quoted at 6.9028 per U.S. dollar, 0.15% firmer than the previous close of 6.9133.
** The largest percentage gainers in the main Shanghai Composite index were Zhongmin Energy Co Ltd 600163.SS, up 10.07%, followed by Ningbo Boway Alloy Material Co Ltd 601137.SS, gaining 10.06% and Shanghai DZH Ltd 601519.SS, up by 10.06%.
** The largest percentage losses in the Shanghai index were Elion Energy Co Ltd 600277.SS, down 10%, followed by Beken Corp 603068.SS, losing 7.25% and Harbin High-Tech Group Co Ltd 600095.SS, down by 7.25%.
** So far this year, the Shanghai stock index is up 15.11%, while China's H-share index climbed 5%. Shanghai stocks have declined 6.75% this month.
** The top gainers among H-shares were China National Building Material Co Ltd 3323.HK, up 3.09%, followed by China Huarong Asset Management Co Ltd 2799.HK, gaining 2.94% and New China Life Insurance Co Ltd 1336.HK, up by 2.93%.
** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were China Railway Group Ltd 0390.HK, which dropped 1.69%, China Telecom Corp Ltd 0728.HK, which lost 1.3% and China Vanke Co Ltd 2202.HK, which slipped 1.2%.
** The top gainer on the Hang Seng was AAC Technologies Holdings Inc 2018.HK, up 3.01%, while the biggest loser was Techtronic Industries Co Ltd 0669.HK, which was down 2.19%.
China stock market graphics suite http://reut.rs/1NfkoGl
(Reporting by Andrew Galbraith, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)
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