February 18, 2014 (Chinavestor) The first two weeks of February have been good to Chinese stocks. Every major stock sector advanced except for consumer cyclical and health care. These sectors lack quality, larger cap Chinese ADRs save for Mindray Medical (NYSE:MR) from the health care sector.
Transportation stocks have delivered the best returns in February so far with a 10.5% advance on average. China Eastern Airlines (NYSE:CEA) and Guangshen Railways (NYSE:GSH) surged over 10% each. Large cap Petrochina (NYSE:PTR), offshore oil specialist CNOOC Ltd. (NYSE:CEO), and major coal miner Yanzhou Coal (NYSE:YZC) led 4.6% higher the energy sector. Silvercorp Metals (NYSE:SVM) and Aluminum Corp. of China (NYSE:ACH) are behind the sound performance of the basic materials sector. The sector rose 4.5% on average. The technology sector advanced 3.6% on average thanks to Baidu Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU) and Sina Corp. (NASDAQ:SINA), but a large number of tech stocks continued to suffer.
Some of the advances are attributed to a lower base at the end of January. China Eastern Airlines (NYSE:CEA), the best component of the transportation sector, started out as low as $16.68 before closing at $19.20 last Friday. The same goes for China Southern Airlines (NYSE:ZNH) and Guangshen Railways (NYSE:GSH).
Basic material stocks have turned around amonth earlier though. Aluminum Corp. of China (NYSE:ACH) as well as Silvercorp Metals (NYSE:SVM) bottomed out at the end of December and are up 6.3% and 25.7% YTD, respectively.
The technology sector is the most liquid among all Chinese sectors. Chinavestor tracks as many as 36 Chinese tech stocks and calculates sector performance weighted by market cap. No wonder, the peicture within the sector is mixed. Sector heavy weight Baidu Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU) rose 7.0% so far while second largest Sina Corp. (NASDAQ:SINA) advanced 7.4%. This is the good news. But promintnet companies such as NetEase Inc. (NASDAQ:NTES), Sohu.com Inc. (NASDAQ:SOHU), Qihoo 360 Technology (NYSE:QIHO) and Changyou.cpom Inc. (NASDAQ:CYOU) suffered.
The overall performance of the services sector is dominated by large cap Chinese telecoms, such as China Mobile (NYSE:CHL) and China Telecom (NYSE:CHA), among others. But the real story belongs to smaller and good trading stocks like Ctrip.com Int. (NASDAQ:CTRP), Home Inns & Hotels Management (NASDAQ:HMIN), and 51job Inc. (NASDAQ:JOBS). These stocks not only advanced in February but remained peppy as recentaly as last Friday.
The following chart sorts Chinese ADRs by how much they moved last Thursday. 51job Inc. (NASDAQ:JOBS) advanced the most follwed closely by Ctrip.com Inc. (NASDAQ:CTRP). SouFun Holdings (NYSE:SFUN) and Baidu Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU) did well, too.
The advance didn't last for long. Most of these advances were wiped out next day, e.g. last Friday, for Baidu Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU) and SouFun Holdings (NYSE:SFUN) as the following chart testifies. 51job Inc. (NASDAQ:JOBS) and Home Inns & Hotels Management (NASDAQ:HMIN) were unable to hang on to previous gains as well.
In essence, one thing is for sure. Baidu Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU), SouFun Holdings (NYSE:SFUN) from the technology sector and Home Inns & Hotels Management (NASDAQ:HMIN), 51job Inc. (NASDAQ:JOBS) and Ctrip.com Int. (NASDAQ:CTRP) are highly volatile stocks with a positive bias.