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Insurers' shares surge on policy news

By Yu Xi (Global Times)

08:25, June 14, 2012

The Shanghai and Shenzhen stock markets registered gains Wednesday due to a good performance at US exchanges Tuesday and reports that China's insurance regulators are weighing plans to expand the investment scope of domestic insurers to ease government restrictions on the sector.

The Shanghai Composite Index advanced 29.13 points, or 1.27 percent, to close at 2,318.92, while the Shenzhen Component Index increased 159.85 points, or 1.63 percent, to finish the day at 9,950.05.

The Shanghai Composite Index tumbled slightly on contractions in the coal and cement sectors at the start of the morning session. Near the noon bell though, both indices rebounded thanks to strong performances from the securities, insurance, electric power and environmental protection sectors. In afternoon trading, the indices were hoisted further on solid showings from the heavily weighted banking, insurance, clothing and food sectors.

The China Insurance Regulatory Commission, the country's insurance regulator, is considering expanding and diversifying insurers' investment scope, which will help insurance companies improve their returns, according to a Securities Times report Wednesday. Domestic insurer China Life Insurance Co shot up 7.19 percent to 17.88 yuan ($2.81); while Ping An Insurance (Group) Co rose 6.54 percent to 45.28 yuan; and China Pacific Insurance (Group) Co added 6.73 percent to 22.20 yuan.

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