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China shares fall on jobs data

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decline_7Jan. 8, 2010 (Chinavestor) The release of the all important non-farm payroll data spells trouble for U.S. markets ahead the bell on Friday. Data shows that the U.S. lost an additional 85,000 jobs in December vs. estimated losses of 8,000. Today's reading caps a difficult year for the U.S. workforce cementing unemployment at 10%.

The most important Chinese indices, the Hang Seng Index and the Shanghai Composite Index traded sideways on Friday ending the day with a positive bias on expectations that jobs report will be better then expected. Power producers have continued to gain in Hong Kong along with China Mobile (HKG:0941) and Petrochina (HKG:0857). But overbought Yanzhou Coal (HKG:1171) and Aluminum Corp. of China (HKG:2600) fell, suggesting a similar action to follow on the NYSE today.

Trading in Shanghai was conservative spurred by news that Chinese regulators approved short selling and margin trading, a long waited tool by traders. China is going to report export data for December over the weekend and is expected to show the first gain in 13 months. This is important for a nation that was dependent on government stimulus to fend off the worst of the financial crisis. News that China overtook the U.S. as the largest car market came as a no surprise after a 50% jump in car sales in 2009. Data show that vehicle sales reached over 13 million in China in 2009 compared to a 10.5 million in the U.S.

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The global economy is back on track, says the global shipping ETF (NYSE:SEA). Credit tightening is hurting Chinese real estate, at least for the short run, as the sluggish performance of the China Real Estate ETF (NYSE:TAO) testifies.

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