China's ChiNext shares jump after report says insurers to be allowed to invest

HONG KONG Tue Jan 7, 2014 9:12pm EST

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HONG KONG Jan 8 (Reuters) - China's ChiNext index jumped on Wednesday as investors cheered an official report that insurance companies will be allowed to invest in firms listed on the Nasdaq-like board of mostly technology start-ups in Shenzhen.

At 0152 GMT, the ChiNext index was up 3 percent at 1,317.8 points, outperforming the 0.8 percent rise for the CSI300 index of the biggest Shanghai and Shenzhen A-share listings.

The official China Securities Journal reported on Wednesday that the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC) is allowing insurers to invest in ChiNext-listed firms as long as they are not under investigation by regulators.

Firms that have been punished or censured by regulators in the past year are also out of bounds, the report said.

Additionally, insurers have to report to CIRC any holdings that reach or exceed 5 percent. (Reporting by Clement Tan; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)

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