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China stocks fell in Asia as oil nears $100

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oil_barrel1 March 2, 2011 (Chinavestor) China stocks in Asia followed U.S. markets lower on Wednesday as high oil prices dented into investor optimism. The Hang Seng Index (INDEXHANGSENG:.HSI) FELL 347.8 points or 1.5% while the Shanghai Composite Index (SHA:000001) shed 4.6 points or 0.2%.

The sell-off in Hong Kong hit large caps, stocks that fell outnumbered those that advanced four to one among 42 members of the Hang Seng index (INDEXHANGSENG:.HSI). All but three components of the iShares FTSE/Xinhua 25 China Index (NYSE:FXI) fell in Hong Kong, another proof of large cap sell-off.

But small caps escaped a broad sell-off, the number of stock that fell were just about the same that advanced among 160 components of the Guggenheim Small Cap China ETF (NYSE:HAO).

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High crude prices continue to hurt airliners and upstream oil companies. Sinopec Corp (HKG:0386), Asia's largest refiner by volume, fell 4.0% while China Southern Airlines (HKG:1055), the largest Chinese carrier, fell 3.5%.

Silvercorp Metals (NYSE:SVM), a Chinese precious metal miner, advanced the most among Chinese ADRs on Tuesday as price of gold hit fresh record. Oversold Cogo Group (NASDAQ:COGO) bounced back over 3%, considered a technical correction. But most Chinese stocks fell, led by ReneSola Ltd. (NYSE:SOL), a Chinese PV manufacturer, on disappointing revenue guidance.

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High oil continues to hurt markets but a better than expected provate payroll data is expected to ease the pain.

There is a lot of news on the Chinese corporate calendar this morning. Sina Corp. (NASDAQ:SINA) and Shanda interactive (NASDAQ:SNDA) reported earnings after the close. Expect volatility to return to the internet and to the online game sectors.

Economic news and overall market sentiment is expected to drive the iShares FTSE/Xinhua 25 China Index (NYSE:FXI) and other ETFs today. While the outlook for the iShares FTSE/Xinhua 25 China Index (NYSE:FXI) is dim, if components of the Hang Seng Index (INDEXHANGSENG:.HSI) can serve as proxy for ADR trading, small caps may escape the sell-off. This bodes well for the Guggenheim Small Cap China ETF (NYSE:HAO) for Wednesday.



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