Chinese shares close lower Tuesday

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Chinese stocks closed lower on Tuesday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index down 0.72 percent to 3,245.31 points.The Shenzhen Component Index closed 0.77 percent lower at 11,416.57 points.The combined turnover of stocks covered by the two indices stood at 930.4 billion yuan (about 135 billion U.S. dollars), up from 839.36 billion yuan on the previous trading day.Stocks related to the shipbuilding sector, electron devices, and agriculture led the gains, while those related to petroleum, home appliances and power equipment suffered the biggest losses.The ChiNext Index, tracking Chinas Nasdaq-style board of growth enterprises, lost 0.59 percent to close at 2,343.11 points on Tuesday.

Private sector given support to 'grow, thrive'

China will make further efforts to enable private entrepreneurs to grow and thrive, and the country's private enterprises will enjoy a better environment and broader development space, Premier Li Qiang said on Monday.

Haikou aims high with lofty economic targets

Aerial photo taken on April 30, 2021 shows the Hainan International Convention and Exhibition Center in Haikou, capital of south Chinas Hainan Province. (File photo: Xinhua)Chinas economy is set to rebound this year, and Haikou, the core area of Hainan Free Trade Port, is speeding up economic development, according to Ding Hui, mayor of Haikou and a deputy to the National Peoples Congress.This year, Chinas GDP growth target has been set at around 5 percent, which "fully reflects the resilience of Chinas economic development and gives us great confidence", he said.Hainan set its GDP growth target this year at around 9.5 percent, giving it the highest growth target among all provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions."Hainans economy and society are expected to be on the fast track of steady, high-quality development in 2023, and Haikou will take the initiative and endeavor to achieve an annual GDP growth of almost 10 percent this year," Ding said.Haikous economic aggregate accounts for one-third of the provincial total, with its population accounting for 30 percent of Hainan.The 2023 Government Work Report noted that steady progress has been made in turning Hainan into a free trade port and also stressed that expanding consumption remains a priority.Haikou is accelerating the establishment of an international tourism center, Ding said, by improving the quality of spending opportunities and holding a series of spending activities.Haikous tourism and culture market witnessed a rapid recovery in the first quarter. During the seven-day Spring Festival holiday, the city received more than 1.22 million tourists, a year-on-year increase of 26.2 percent.Last week, 90,000 tickets for three upcoming concerts in Haikou were snapped up within 10 seconds. Nearly 40 percent of ticket buyers came from outside the province.With the travel boom, Haikou has quickly harnessed the potential of duty-free shopping, Ding sai...

Opening-up, stress on value chains praised

Aerial photo taken on Sept. 11, 2020 shows the city view of Shenzhen, in south Chinas Guangdong Province. (File photo: Xinhua)IMF official says reforms, focus on consumption key to balanced growthChinas unswerving commitment to high-level opening-up is "very welcome" when rising geo-economic fragmentation is threatening global growth, said a senior official of the International Monetary Fund.Krishna Srinivasan, director of the Asia and Pacific Department of the IMF, told China Daily that rising geopolitical tensions in recent years have raised the risk that fragmentation pressures could add to global headwinds and cause a slowdown in trade and foreign direct investment flows.Particularly, IMF estimates showed that the Asia-Pacific region could suffer significantly in a severe fragmentation scenario, with medium-term output losses of over 3 percent of GDP, Srinivasan said."In this context, Chinas ambition of high-quality opening-up that focuses on increasing trade and attracting foreign direct investment flows is very welcome," he said, adding that the country has played a key role in the development of regional and global value chains."Strong domestic policies and a focus on international collaboration can help achieve these goals," he said, adding that accelerating reforms to strengthen the real economy will be important for China to attract foreign investment.Priorities include reforms to ensure competitive neutrality between private companies and State-owned enterprises, a further opening up of domestic markets, a greater reliance on market forces and tackling local protectionism, he said.Srinivasans remarks follow Chinas reiteration of its resolve to further open up its economy. Stressing that the country will open itself wider to the rest of the world, Premier Li Qiang said China will align with high-standard international economic and trade rules this year. He met the press on Monday after the closing of t...

ChiNext Index lower at midday Tuesday

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) - The ChiNext Index, tracking Chinas Nasdaq-style board of growth enterprises, lost 1.26 percent to 2,327.34 points in the morning session Tuesday.The ChiNext Index, together with the Shenzhen Component Index and other indices, reflects the performance of stocks listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.

Chinese shares lower at midday Tuesday

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) - Chinas major stock indices ended lower in the morning session Tuesday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index down 0.88 percent to 3,239.88 points.The Shenzhen Component Index lost 1.16 percent to 11,372.09 points at midday.

China's interbank treasury bond index opens lower Tuesday

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Chinas interbank treasury bond index in net price opened at 995 points Tuesday, lower than the previous close of 995.06 points, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trade System.The index reflects real-time trading of treasury bonds in Chinas interbank bond market.The index opens at 9 a.m. on every workday and is updated every five minutes until closing at 5 p.m.

China's benchmark interbank gold prices higher Tuesday

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Chinas benchmark prices for spot interbank gold transactions were higher Tuesday, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trade System.The benchmark price for gold that is 99.95 percent pure or above stood at 419.75 yuan (about 60.88 U.S. dollars) per gram, up 2.45 yuan from the previous trading day, while the price for gold that is 99.99 percent pure or above went up 3.72 yuan to 421.45 yuan per gram.Spot transaction prices on the interbank price inquiry market are allowed to rise or fall within 15 percent from the benchmark prices each trading day.The interbank gold price inquiry business was introduced in 2012 to enhance market liquidity and enrich trading models.

Chinese yuan strengthens to 6.8949 against USD Tuesday

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) -- The central parity rate of the Chinese currency renminbi, or the yuan, strengthened 426 pips to 6.8949 against the U.S. dollar Tuesday, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trade System.In Chinas spot foreign exchange market, the yuan is allowed to rise or fall by 2 percent from the central parity rate each trading day.The central parity rate of the yuan against the U.S. dollar is based on a weighted average of prices offered by market makers before the opening of the interbank market each business day.

ChiNext Index opens lower Tuesday

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) -- The ChiNext Index, tracking Chinas Nasdaq-style board of growth enterprises, was down 0.16 percent to open at 2,353.21 points Tuesday.The ChiNext Index, together with the Shenzhen Component Index and other indices, reflects the performance of stocks listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.

Chinese shares open lower Tuesday

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Chinese stocks opened lower on Tuesday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index down 0.21 percent to open at 3,261.92 points.The Shenzhen Component Index opened 0.19 percent lower at 11,483.65 points.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index opens 0.87 pct lower

HONG KONG, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Hong Kongs Hang Seng Index fell 171.46 points, or 0.87 percent to open at 19,524.51 points on Tuesday.

SVB's German branch ordered to halt transactions: BaFin

FRANKFURT, March 13 (Xinhua) -- The German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) on Monday ordered the United States-based Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) to halt the operations of its Germany branch.File photo: AFPSVB, previously the 16th largest bank in the United States that had been operational for 40 years, collapsed last week.The BaFin "has issued a ban today for Silicon Valley Bank Germany Branch on disposals and payments, as the institution is at risk of being unable to meet its obligations towards its creditors," it said in a statement.The watchdog also ordered the bank to be closed for business with customers.Unlike its parent company based in California in the U.S., the Germany branch has been operational since May 2018 and it does not conduct deposit business in Germany."Silicon Valley Bank Germany Branch is not systemically important," the BaFin statement said.Citing the end-2022 financial statements of Silicon Valley Bank Germany Branch, BaFin said that its total assets amounted to 789.2 million euros (844 million U.S. dollars).

Fed to probe regulation of SVB after bank's failure

The Federal Reserve said Monday it is launching a review of the supervision and regulation of Silicon Valley Bank, following SVBs rapid collapse.(Photo: AFP)US authorities pulled the plug on SVB last Friday, marking Americas biggest banking failure since the 2008 financial crisis and raising fears of potential spillovers across the banking system.The review will be led by Fed Vice Chair for supervision Michael Barr, and this will be released by May 1, the Fed said in a notice."The events surrounding Silicon Valley Bank demand a thorough, transparent, and swift review by the Federal Reserve," said Fed Chair Jerome Powell in a statement.Barr added that there is a need to "conduct a careful and thorough review of how we supervised and regulated this firm."A run on deposits had made it no longer tenable for the medium-sized bank to stay afloat on its own.

US stocks end mixed amid banking sector fears

NEW YORK, March 13 (Xinhua) -- Wall Streets major averages finished mixed on Monday as investors dumped financial shares after recent bank failures in the United States.(Photo: AP)The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 90.5 points, or 0.28 percent, to 31,819.14. The S&P 500 decreased 5.83 points, or 0.15 percent, to 3,855.76. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 49.95 points, or 0.45 percent, to 11,188.84.Seven of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors ended in green, with real estate and utilities up 1.61 percent and 1.54 percent, respectively, outpacing the rest. Financials slumped 3.78 percent, the worst-performing group.The above market reactions came as investors remained concerned about the health of the U.S. banking system.U.S. regulators on Sunday closed New York-based Signature Bank, a key lender in the crypto industry, citing systemic risk.The decision came two days after authorities closed Californias Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) as the tech-focused lender reported huge losses from securities sales, triggering a run on the banks deposits.The failure of SVB and Signature Bank has raised concerns over potential losses on the bond holdings of other U.S. banks, many of which invested heavily in long-duration Treasuries following an influx of deposits during the pandemic. The value of these securities has fallen as the Federal Reserve has raised rates.The U.S. Treasury Department, the Fed, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation on Sunday announced joint action to stabilize the U.S. banking system."A crisis of confidence has arisen in the banking industry negatively impacting the sector and sparking broader market concerns," Chief Investment Officer Americas at UBS Global Wealth Management Solita Marcelli said in a note on Monday."Bank stock investors seem to be taking a sell first and ask questions later approach to the group, which will likely continue to weigh on bank shares for a while," Marcelli said.For the week ending Fri...

EU green tech plan not protectionist: von der Leyen

European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen denied Monday that the EUs response to huge US green subsidies was "protectionist", as Brussels prepares to unveil measures to boost clean tech.(Photo: AFP) The EUs executive arm headed by von der Leyen is set to lay out its Net Zero Industry Act on Thursday in a bid to help Europe challenge the financial might of the United States and China in the field. Brussels was pushed into unveiling its own plan after EU nations slammed US President Joe Bidens "buy American" subsidy programme as discriminatory against its industries. But critics now warn that leaked drafts of the commissions proposals show the EU could follow suit and look to deter clean tech imports in a bid to help its own firms. But von der Leyen rejected the allegations. "This is our decision to invest in the net zero industry and to facilitate the development of new clean technologies, so to cut red tape and to reduce the bureaucratic burden, to have timelines in the permitting processes so that we speed up," von der Leyen told AFP in an interview organised by the European Newsroom project."But there is not a single point that is protectionist. On the contrary, its a very open act."The EU chief insisted the commission had taken a "very very conscious decision to have this open attitude to work together with like-minded partners".Von der Leyen held talks with Biden on a visit to Washington last week in a bid to avoid competition in the race to transition away from fossil fuels. Ahead of that meeting, the EU said it was relaxing state aid rules as it pushes to bolster its renewable energy industry and counter the threat to European industry from US and Chinese subsidies.Von der Leyen and Biden also announced after their Oval Office talks that negotiations will begin on giving EU producers of critical minerals access to the US market under the Inflation Reduction Act. The EUs ...

After two historic US bank failures, here's what comes next

Two large banks that cater to the tech industry have collapsed after a bank run, government agencies are taking emergency measures to backstop the financial system, and President Joe Biden is reassuring Americans that the money they have in banks is safe.The seal of the Board of Governors of the United States Federal Reserve System is displayed in the ground at the Marriner S. Eccles Federal Reserve Board Building in Washington, Feb. 5, 2018. (Photo: AP)Its all eerily reminiscent of the financial meltdown that began with the bursting of the housing bubble 15 years ago. Yet the initial pace this time around seems even faster.Over the last three days, the U.S. seized the two financial institutions after a bank run on Silicon Valley Bank, based in Santa Clara, California. It was the largest bank failure since Washington Mutual went under in 2008.How did we get here? And will the steps the government unveiled over the weekend be enough?Here are some questions and answers about what has happened and why it matters:WHY DID SILICON VALLEY BANK FAIL?Silicon Valley Bank had already been hit hard by a rough patch for technology companies in recent months and the Federal Reserves aggressive plan to increase interest rates to combat inflation compounded its problems.The bank held billions of dollars worth of Treasuries and other bonds, which is typical for most banks as they are considered safe investments. However, the value of previously issued bonds has begun to fall because they pay lower interest rates than comparable bonds issued in todays higher interest rate environment.Thats usually not an issue either because bonds are considered long term investments and banks are not required to book declining values until they are sold. Such bonds are not sold for a loss unless there is an emergency and the bank needs cash.Silicon Valley, the bank that collapsed Friday, had an emergency. Its customers were largely startups and other tech-centric companies that n...

Female live-streamers boost China's rural revitalization

File photo: XinhuaInternet economy has brought more opportunities to women living in rural areas who are able to surf the internet. They have become live-streamers to introduce rural scenery and sell local specialties, making a great contribution to rural revitalization."The tangerines arent waxed and ripen naturally on the tree. It is thin-skinned and delicious. Just place the order if you like it," Song Chunjiao, dressed in Yao ethnic clothing, live streamed online to sell the fruit produced from her orchard in Jiangyong county, South Chinas Hunan province.Jiangyong county is known for its unique agricultural products such as fragrant pomelos, taros, and fragrant rice. Initially, Song Chunjiao sold these products on WeChat Moments.After receiving e-commerce skills training organized by local government, she became proficient in short video shooting and live streaming sales.Engaged in live-streaming marketing, Song sold over 900,000 kg of local fruits annually. Last year, Song Chunjiao established an e-commerce company and trained women nearby in online selling."Previously, they worked in farming or did odd jobs, earning very little money. Now, they are skilled in filming, editing, and sales, and their monthly income exceeds 5,000 RMB($727.2)," Song said.Platform-based employment, sharing economy, and the internet celebrity economy, have broadened the employment opportunities for women living in rural areas.According to the "2021 Survey Report on Rural Womens Employment in China," women account for 62.3 percent and 53 percent of the workforce in artificial intelligence trainers and village e-commerce live-streamers, respectively."Rural women have become an indispensable force in rural revitalization process," said Li Yuele, head of the e-commerce office in Jiangyong County.Through short videos and livestreaming training, the county has educated dozens of female internet celebrities who serve as rural image amba...

Pfizer buys biotech firm Seagen for $43 billion

File photo: CGTNUS pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced Monday that it had reached a deal to buy biotech firm Seagen, specializing in innovative cancer treatment, for $43 billion.Pfizer is offering $229 per share in cash, and the companies expect to complete the transaction later this year or in early 2024, they said in a statement."Pfizer is deploying its financial resources to advance the battle against cancer," said Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla."Oncology continues to be the largest growth driver in global medicine, and this acquisition will enhance Pfizers position in this important space," Bourla added.Seagen -- leading in the research, development and commercialization of cancer treatments -- is growing, with a 12 percent increase in revenue forecast this year to $2.2 billion.

Wall Street stocks slump while regional banks under stress

US stocks slumped Monday with key indices markedly lower amid worries over the banking system, following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and shuttering of Signature Bank.The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 0.7 percent while the broad-based S&P 500 lost more than one percent. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.9 percent, while regional banks remained under pressure as well.

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