China stocks up 5th week on stimulus, trade optimism


SHANGHAI, Jan 3 (Reuters) - China stocks slipped on Friday, but finished the first week of a new decade higher with a five-week winning streak as Beijing eased monetary policy to shore up the economy even as investors cheered a thaw in Sino-U.S. trade tensions.

** The blue-chip CSI300 index .CSI300 fell 0.2% to 4,144.96, while the Shanghai Composite Index .SSEC slipped 0.1% to 3,083.79.

** For the week, CSI300 was up 3.1%, while SSEC advanced 2.6%, both logging fifth week of gains in a row.

** On the trade front, investors were expecting a signing of a Phase 1 trade deal between China and the U.S. on Jan. 15.

** The market got another lift from Beijing's latest policy support for the economy going into the new year.

** China's central bank said on Wednesday it was cutting the amount of cash that all banks must hold as reserves, releasing around 800 billion yuan ($114.76 billion) in funds to shore up the slowing economy.

** The People's Bank of China has now cut the banks' reserve requirement ratio (RRR) eight times since early 2018 to free up more funds for banks to lend as economic growth slows to the weakest pace in nearly 30 years.

** Analysts say Beijing's latest RRR cut would help spur its real economy, providing solid foundation for further rally in the world's second largest equities market.

** Reuters reported on Friday that China has decided to keep its inflation target unchanged this year at around 3%, suggesting policymakers will continue to roll out economic stimulus gradually and avoid more aggressive measures.

** On the other hand, there were signs of disappointing growth estimates hurting sentiment and denting stock prices, as companies started to publish annual estimates for 2019 and 2020.

** The world's most valuable liquor maker Kweichow Moutai 600519.SS slumped 4.6% to a near four-month low, extending its sharp correction from Thursday, after the consumer giant forecast full-year profit below estimates.

** There could be other blue-chip companies whose earnings estimates might let investors down, China Fortune Securities' analyst Yan Kaiwen said.

** Around the region, MSCI's Asia ex-Japan stock index .MIAPJ0000PUS was weaker by 0.15%.

** The yuan CNY=CFXS was quoted at 6.9726 per U.S. dollar, 0.12% weaker than the previous close of 6.9643.

** As of 07:04 GMT, China's A-shares were trading at a premium of 26.46% over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares.

($1 = 6.9713 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Luoyan Liu and Brenda Goh; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

((; Reuters Messaging:

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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