Stocks close flat

Huang Yixuan
But the market showed strong interest in hemp.
Huang Yixuan

 Shanghai stocks closed flat on Wednesday, with the downside moderated by a strong rise in hemp shares — covering everything from textiles to medicine.

The rise was helped by hemp company Shanghai Shunho New Materials Technology Co's announcement it would set up a US subsidiary.

The Shanghai Composite Index edged down 0.01 percent to close at 3,090.64 points. The secondary Shenzhen Component Index fell 0.4 percent to 9,800.6 points, but the blue chip CSI300 index closed 0.04 percent higher at 3,835.44 points.

Turnover in the two major bourses totaled 779.9 billion yuan (US$116.41 billion), up 0.55 percent from the previous session.

Hemp shares posted the biggest gains after Shanghai Shunho New Materials' announcement.

Pacific Securities says China's industrial hemp industry is in the early stages of a potentially lucrative market.

Several domestic-listed companies have recently moved into the market, drawing the attention of investors. Tian Jin Global Magnetic Card Co, Shanghai Shunho New Materials Technology Co and three other companies listed on the A-share markets all posted rises hitting the daily cap of 10 percent.

Financial shares also performed strongly. Shanxi International Trust Co and Shanghai Greencourt Investment Group Co both hit by the daily rise cap of 10 percent.

Agriculture was one of the day's losers. Shanghai Greencourt Investment Group Co fell 8.5 percent and Tech-bank Food Co lost 7.53 percent.

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