U.S. Markets closed

PRESS DIGEST - China - Nov 20

Nov 20 (Reuters) - Chinese newspapers available in Beijing and Shanghai carried the following stories on Wednesday. Reuters has not checked the stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.


- The ruling Communist Party of China set up a special group to go around the country to promote the leadership's latest reform plan, seen as the boldest reforms planned in three decades.


- The northeastern city of Harbin in Heilongjiang province has been hit by its heaviest snowfalls since records began after snow fell for nearly 60 hours, leaving snow piled as high as 50 millimetres in some areas. The storm caused four deaths in neighbouring Jilin province but no casualties were reported in Heilongjiang.


- The plan announced by the Chinese leadership this month to quicken the pace of economic reforms, including stepping up the pace to make the Chinese currency yuan fully convertible, heralds a new phase of active cross-the-border capital flows in and out of China, economists say.

- The Shanghai International Energy Trading Centre, a unit of the Shanghai Commodity Exchange, will start operations on Friday, the latest step taken by the exchange to prepare the launch of China's first crude oil futures, possibly in the first half of next year.


- More and more Chinese are now trading bitcoins, with the daily volume of Chinese trading even exceeding that on the professional platforms of Mt.Gox and BitStamp on Monday, statistics issued by Bitcoinity.org showed.

- Despite a consolidation of China's stock market on Tuesday, stock index futures continued trading in premiums against spots, indicating optimism sparked by the country's latest bold reform plan still prevails the markets.


- Yields of China's benchmark 10-year government bonds have hit multi-year highs recently due to the central bank's tight liquidity stance and are likely to rise above the main 5-percent resistance soon.


- Some Chinese banks are set to suffer losses in the looming bailout plans of Suntech Power, with policy bank China Development Bank possibly losing 1.6 billion yuan ($262 million).


- Anhui province is experimenting with letting farmers mortgage or transfer control of the publicly owned land they farm as China tries to finds ways to create a land market. However, the farmers will not be granted ownership of the land.

For Hong Kong and South China newspapers see.....