April 2, 2018 / 7:29 AM / a year ago

China stocks end lower as trade war worries linger

* Shanghai stocks lower, blue-chip CSI300 index down

* Gains in Shanghai stocks led by Wuhan Xianglong Power Industry Co Ltd and losses by Taiyuan Lionhead Cement Co Ltd

SHANGHAI, April 2 (Reuters) - China stocks kicked off the first quarter with mild losses on Monday, amid lingering worries of a full-blown trade war between the United States and China, and as investors assessed mixed economic readings. ** At the close, the Shanghai Composite index was down 0.2 percent at 3,163.18, while the blue-chip CSI300 index was down 0.3 percent at 3,886.92. ** The smaller Shenzhen index ended up 0.16 percent and the start-up board ChiNext Composite index was unchanged. ** The Trump administration this week will unveil the list of Chinese imports targeted for U.S. tariffs to punish Beijing over technology transfer policies, a move expected to intensify trade tensions between the world’s two largest economies. ** China has increased tariffs by up to 25 percent on 128 U.S. products including frozen pork, wine and certain fruits and nuts, escalating a spat between the world’s biggest economies in response to U.S. duties on imports of aluminium and steel. ** Investors also weighed economic readings for China’s factory growth in March. ** Official data showed growth in China’s manufacturing sector picked up more than expected in March, while a private survey showed the country’s manufacturing activity expanded at its weakest pace in four months in March as export demand faltered. ** The largest percentage gainers in the main Shanghai Composite index were Wuhan Xianglong Power Industry Co Ltd up 10.08 percent, followed by Henan Ancai Hi-tech Co Ltd gaining 10.05 percent and Neusoft Corp up by 10.01 percent. ** The largest percentage losses in the Shanghai index were Taiyuan Lionhead Cement Co Ltd down 10 percent, followed by Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt Co Ltd losing 6.26 percent and Sinomach Automobile Co Ltd down by 6.13 percent. (Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)

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