China shares end weaker, dragged down by brokerage firms

HONG KONG Thu May 29, 2014 3:10am EDT

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HONG KONG May 29 (Reuters) - China shares slipped back to negative territory on Thursday, hurt by weaker stockbrokers and profit-taking by investors who rotated out of recent high-performers.

The Shanghai Composite Index ended down 0.5 percent at 2,040.60 points. The CSI300 of the leading Shanghai and Shenzhen A-share listings lost 0.7 percent.

Shares of securities brokers were the biggest index drags. CITIC Securities, China's largest listed brokerage, was down 1.7 percent, while Haitong Securities shed 1.5 percent.

Health-related stocks outperformed, thanks to newly-announced reform policies allowing private companies more access to the healthcare system.

Jointown Pharmaceutical Group surged 6.9 percent, Jiangsu Hengrui Medicine gained 2.1 percent, and Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group added 1.3 percent.

(Reporting by Grace Li; Editing by Eric Meijer)

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