BEIJING (dpa-AFX) - The China stock market has climbed higher in three straight sessions - separated by the long Lunar New Year break - and advanced almost 80 points or 3.2 percent in that span. The Shanghai Composite Index now rests just beneath the 2,655-point plateau although investors figure to cash in on Tuesday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed and flat amid uncertainty about the outlook for global trade, while weakness in crude oil prices is likely to cap any upside. The European markets were up and the U.S. bourses were mixed and flat and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.
The SCI finished sharply higher on Monday following gains from the securities and mixed performances from the financials and insurance companies.
For the day, the index spiked 35.67 points or 1.36 percent to finish at 2,653.90 after trading between 2,613.17 and 2,654.10. The Shenzhen Composite Index surged 37.95 points or 2.90 percent to end at 1,347.94.
Among the actives, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China shed 0.18 percent, while Bank of China lost 0.27 percent, China Merchants Bank collected 0.31 percent, China Life Insurance eased 0.09 percent, Ping An Insurance jumped 1.87 percent, CITIC Securities climbed 1.51 percent, PetroChina added 0.14 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) fell 0.70 percent, Shenhua Energy dipped 0.10 percent, Gemdale was down 0.27 percent, Poly Developments slid 0.08 percent and China Construction Bank was unchanged.
The lead from Wall Street provides little guidance as stocks showed a lack of direction on Monday, bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line before ending mixed.
The Dow shed 53.22 points or 0.21 percent to finish at 25,053.11, while the NASDAQ added 9.71 points or 0.13 percent to 7,307.90 and the S&P rose 1.92 points or 0.07 percent to 2,709.80.
The choppy trading on Wall Street came amid uncertainty ahead of the next round of trade talks between the U.S. and China due to take place later this week as the world's two largest economies try to make a deal before an early March deadline.
A jump in tariffs on Chinese goods is currently set to take effect at that time, although they could be delayed if talks between U.S. and Chinese officials continue to make progress toward a trade deal.
Crude oil prices recovered from early weakness on Monday but still settled lower as weak global growth outlook raised concerns about energy demand. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for March ended down $0.31 or 0.6 percent at $52.41 a barrel, well off the day's low of $51.23.
Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX