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Banking stocks lead in mixed trading day

By Wang Jiamei (Global Times)

08:24, April 25, 2012

The Shanghai and Shenzhen stock markets closed on mixed results Tuesday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index edging up 0.01 percent, or 0.25 points, to end at 2,388.83; and the Shenzhen Component Index down 0.34 percent, or 34.16 points, to finish at 10,041.89.

The Shanghai Composite opened slightly lower at the beginning of trading, following overnight falls in the US and European markets due to growing concerns over Europe's debt crisis following a raft of negative news, such as the resignation of the Dutch Cabinet and French President Nicolas Sarkozy's poor performance in the first round of presidential elections.

In the morning session, the heavily weighted financial, real estate and oil sectors led a rally, pushing the Shanghai index up 1.14 percent to an intra-day high of 2,415.75 points, before a quick slump in most sectors drove down the index to fall below its five-day, 60-day and 30-day moving averages in succession. The afternoon market managed to rebound to end flat after bottoming out at 2,350.40 points, with banking, insurance and real estate stocks helping reverse early losses.

The banking sector outperformed the market after Bank of Beijing Tuesday reported a 33.79 percent year-on-year growth in its net profits for the first quarter of 2012, sparking expectations among investors of soaring profits in the banking industry this year. Bank of Ningbo jumped 6.78 percent to 10.71 yuan ($1.70) per share Tuesday, Bank of Beijing gained 3.70 percent to 10.37 yuan, and Bank of Nanjing closed at 9.48 yuan, up 3.61 percent.

Meanwhile, stocks related to financial reform shoot up in the afternoon following news that Wenzhou, in Zhejiang Province, will soon roll out innovative financial policies in five major fields. Shanghai Jinfeng Investment surged the daily limit by 10.05 percent, Zhejiang Furun jumped by 10.04 percent, and Zhejiang Orient Holdings soared 10.03 percent.

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