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Chinese shares plunge on weak data


18:23, June 13, 2013

An investor is seen at a trading hall of a securities firm in Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang Province, June 13, 2013. Chinese shares closed sharply lower on Thursday as the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index slumped 2.83 percent, or 62.54 points, to end at 2,148.36, and the Shenzhen Component Index dived 3.78 percent to 8,432.43. (Xinhua/Long Wei)

BEIJING, June 13 (Xinhua) -- Chinese shares closed lower on Thursday as weaker-than-expected economic data weighed heavily on investors' confidence.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index slumped 2.83 percent, or 62.54 points, to end at 2,148.36. The Shenzhen Component Index dived 3.78 percent, or 331.18 points, to 8,432.42.

Combined turnover on the Shanghai and Shenzhen bourses shrank to 163 billion yuan (26.46 billion U.S. dollars) from 172.4 billion yuan on the previous trading day, which was June 7.

Thursday was the first day of trading after the three-day Dragon Boat Festival holiday in China.

The country's producer price index (PPI), which measures inflation at wholesale level, fell 2.9 percent year on year in May, the National Bureau of Statistics announced on June 9.

About 90 percent of stocks on the two bourses declined on Thursday.

Sinopec, China's top refiner, dropped 2.17 percent to a record low 8.10 yuan per share.

The cement sector led the declines with the sub-index down 5.14 percent. Stocks of securities, non-ferrous metals and coal also saw large losses.

Bucking the trend, the Internet sector surged with both Leshi Internet IT Corp. and Shenzhen Zqgame Co., Ltd. hitting the daily increase limit of 10 percent.

Stocks of other Asia-Pacific countries also saw slumps on Thursday.

Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 Stock Average plunged 6.4 percent as market sentiment was undermined by a stronger yen and overnight losses on Wall Street and European markets.

Phillipine's PSE and Thailand's SET both dived over 4 percent, while stocks in Indonesia, Singapore and Australia all dropped.

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