SHANGHAI, Jan 17 (Reuters) - China stocks rose on Monday
after the country's economy grew faster than expected in the
final quarter of 2021 but the growth was still at its weakest
pace in one-and-half years, prompting the central bank to
unexpectedly cut loan rates.
The CSI300 index rose 0.9% to 4,767.59 points at
the end of the morning session, while the Shanghai Composite
Index gained 0.6%, to 3,542.03 points.
The Hang Seng index dropped 0.6%, to 24,240.11
points. The Hong Kong China Enterprises Index lost 1.0%,
** China's gross domestic product (GDP) expanded 4.0% in the
October-December period from a year earlier, and the economy
grew 8.1% in 2021, faster than a forecast
** "We expect front-loaded policy support to prevent growth
from falling significantly below 5% in 2022. This includes the
MLF rate cut today. More generally, we expect strong
infrastructure spending, robust credit growth, and support for
the real estate sector this year." said Louis Kuijs, Head of
Asia Economics at Oxford Economics.
** Real estate developers gained 1.7%, after
China expected the operation of its property market to keep pace
with steady growth of investment in the sector this year.
** Information technology firms and semiconductors
added more than 2% each, after President Xi
Jinping's essay on strengthening regulation and governance to
boost China's "digital economy".
** New energy shares, machinery firms
and automobiles rose between 1.7% and
** In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Tech index fell 1%,
with Tencent Holdings and Meituan down 1.7%
and 2.1%, respectively.
** Sands China Ltd surged 15.5% to become the
biggest percentage gainer on the Hang Seng Index, and a
sub-index tracking gaming stocks listed in Hong Kong
** Macau's government announced that the number of new
casino operators allowed to function in the world's largest
gambling hub would be limited to six with an operating period of
up to 10 years.
** Mainland developers listed in Hong Kong
(Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom; editing by Uttaresh.V)