Economic data and vaccine news boost shares
China’s stock market continued to rise on Thursday, with investors buoyed by upbeat economic data and encouraging vaccine news.
The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index gained 1.73 percent to close at 3,473.09 after hitting a record high during the day.
The smaller Shenzhen Component Index rose 1.89 percent to finish at 14,470.68, while the ChiNext Index climbed 2.27 percent to end the day at 2,966.26.
For the year, the three indexes have recorded accumulative rises of 14 percent, 39 percent and 65 percent, respectively.
Combined turnover on the two bourses came to 961.7 billion yuan (US$146.9 billion), compared with 847 billion yuan in the previous session. Over 3 billion yuan of northbound funds poured into the market through the Stock Connect program.
Most sectors gained, with leisure service companies, national defense firms and non-banking financial institutions posting strong performances.
The purchasing managers' index (PMI) for China's non-manufacturing sector came in at 55.7 in December, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics.
That was a slight decline compared to November’s 56.4. Still, the December figure was above the 50 level that separates expansion from contraction.
Also on Thursday, Chinese health regulators said they had given conditional approval to a coronavirus vaccine developed by state-owned Sinopharm.
The two-dose vaccine is the first to be approved for general use in China.
"This vaccine will be provided free of charge to all Chinese people,” Zeng Yixin, deputy director of the National Health Commission told a news conference.
After COVID-19 vaccines are approved to enter the market, China will vaccinate senior citizens, people with underlying conditions, and the general public in an orderly manner, the NHC official added.
Kang Shuiyue, chairman and chief investment officer of Danyang Investment, said in an interview with Caixin.com that 2020 was a big year for investment in growth enterprises, and it was also a year in which the concept of value investment had been deeply rooted in investors’ hearts.