China shares sink as a corporate bond default looms

HONG KONG, March 5 Wed Mar 5, 2014 2:07am EST

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HONG KONG, March 5 (Reuters) - China shares sank on Wednesday, led by the banking sector on fears of a possible default by a listed company and on Beijing's plan to introduce deposit insurance, a move towards freeing up deposit rates.

The Shanghai Composite Index, which fell 0.2 percent on Tuesday, closed down 0.9 percent at 2,053.1 points. The CSI300 of the largest Shanghai and Shenzhen A-share listings also dropped 0.9 percent.

The Nasdaq-style ChiNext Composite Index of mainly high tech startups listed in Shenzhen rose 0.3 percent.

In what would be the country's first domestic bond default, loss-making Chinese solar equipment producer Chaori Solar said it will not be able to meet interest payments on bonds due on Friday.

In a State of the Union-style address at the start of China's annual parliament meeting on Wednesday, Premier Li Keqiang said Beijing aims to grow the world's second-largest economy this year by 7.5 percent, the same target as set for 2013. (Reporting by Clement Tan; Editing by Richard Borsuk)

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