March 16, 2010 (Chinavestor) Shares of Chinese companies have been trading in a narrow range, a sign that the markets are looking for a direction. While corporate earnings and growth look promising, fiscal tightening to fight inflation hurts market sentiment. The Hang Seng Index opened high but shed -56.17 points by the end of the day. The Shanghai Composite made it back to the black in the last 30 minutes of trading after a lackluster trading day. Energy stocks felt the pressure from falling oil and coal prices. Shares of China Shanhua (HKG:1088), the largest cola miner in China, fell -2.7% followed by NYSE-HKEx cross-listed Yanzhou Coal (HKG:1171) (NYSE:YZC). But China Life Insurance (HKG:2628) (NYSE:LFC) advanced as income from life insurance premiums increased from 2009 levels and the company is expected to issue a 200% increase in net profit.
Earnings will remain in focus for U.S .slited China stocks on Tuesday. China Finance Online (NASDAQ:JRJC), General Steel (NYSE:GSI), Focus Media (NASDAQ:FMCN), Simcere Pharma (AMEX:SCE) are among those that will report today. China stocks earnings calendar March 15 - 19.
The following chart testifies that Chinese indeices have been trading in a narrow range. The Shanghai Composite has been under pressure and some say may touch 2,500.