BEIJING (dpa-AFX) - The China stock market has finished higher in consecutive trading days, rising more than 120 points or 4.5 percent along the way. The Shanghai Composite Index now rests just above the 2,780-point plateau and it may extend its gains on Thursday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is positive on continued optimism for stimulus in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The European markets were up and the U.S. bourses were mixed and the Asian markets figure to split the difference.
The SCI finished sharply higher on Wednesday following gains from the financial shares, property stocks and oil and insurance companies.
For the day, the index advanced 59.15 points or 2.17 percent to finish at 2,781.59 after trading between 2,757.80 and 2,788.64. The Shenzhen Composite Index picked up 48.63 points or 2.92 percent to end at 1,714.86.
Among the actives, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China climbed 1.17 percent, while Bank of China collected 0.86 percent, China Construction Bank rose 0.16 percent, China Merchants Bank spiked 3.11 percent, China Life Insurance soared 5.80 percent, Ping An Insurance jumped 2.03 percent, PetroChina added 0.41 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) advanced 0.89 percent, China Shenhua Energy gained 0.64 percent, Gemdale surged 6.34 percent, Poly Developments gathered 4.48 percent and China Vanke perked 6.43 percent.
The lead from Wall Street is cautiously optimistic as stocks moved sharply higher on Wednesday before giving ground late in the session to end mixed.
The Dow jumped 495.64 points or 2.39 percent to finish at 21,200.55, while the NASDAQ fell 33.56 points or 0.45 percent to 7,384.29 and the S&P 500 climbed 28.23 points or 1.15 percent to 2,475.56.
Stocks moved sharply higher earlier in the session in reaction to news that Senate leaders and the White House have reached an agreement on the $2 trillion stimulus bill - but a potential snag over jobless benefits could delay its passage, sending stocks lower in the afternoon.
The Senate could pass the bill as soon as today, although the stimulus package would still need to be approved by the Democrat-controlled House before heading to President Donald Trump's desk.
Crude oil prices moved higher on Wednesday after a decline in weekly gasoline inventories. Optimism about the passage of the massive $2 trillion stimulus bill also contributed to oil's rise in the session. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for May ended up $0.48 or 2 percent at $24.49 a barrel.
Closer to home, China will see final Q4 numbers for current account later today; the previous reading suggested a surplus of $40.1 billion.
Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX