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Two Cases Of Omicron Strain Detected

LPR: China's central bank left its benchmark rate for loans unchanged for the 18th straight month, according to a statement on the People's Bank of China website. The Loan Prime Rate, guiding companies' cost of borrowing, remains at 3.85% for the one-year maturity and 4.65% for five years.

LIQUIDITY: The PBOC injected CNY100 billion via 7-day reverse repos with the rate unchanged at 2.2%. The operations lead to a net injection of CNY90 billion after offsetting the maturity of CNY10 billion reverse repos today, according to Wind Information. The operation aims to offset the impact of tax season and the issuance of government bonds, the PBOC said on its website.

RATES: The seven-day weighted average interbank repo rate for depository institutions (DR007) fell to 2.2097% from the close of 2.2810% on Tuesday, Wind Information showed. The overnight repo average decreased to 2.0850% from the previous 2.2149%.

YUAN: The currency strengthened to 6.3936 against the dollar from 6.3998 on Tuesday. The PBOC set the dollar-yuan central parity rate lower at 6.4069, compared with the 6.4307 set on Tuesday.

BONDS: The yield on the 10-year China Government Bond was last at 3.0350%, down from Thursday's close of 3.0450%, according to Wind Information.

STOCKS: The Shanghai Composite Index edged down 0.17% at 3,587.00, while the CSI300 index fell 0.25% to 4,910.18. Hang Seng Index rallied 1.35% to 26,136.02.

FROM THE PRESS: China's top economic planner, the National Development and Reform Commission, said it will take necessary measures to intervene in coal prices, stating the current "irrational price hikes" have deviated from the fundamentals of supply and demand with the heating season coming, according to a statement on its website posted late Tuesday. Interventions could include limiting profits, setting price caps and requiring approvals for price hikes, the planner said. Coal companies should ensure the demand for power generation and heating and help the economy to operate steadily, the NDRC said. Separately, in a visit to the NDRC, Vice Premier Han Zheng urged the planner to implement cross-cycle policies to support growth and boost coal production to help ensure supplies of coal, electricity, gas as well as logistics, according to a statement on Gov.cn.

The People's Bank of China will strive to create better financing conditions for the development of the private economy as well as strengthen anti-monopoly and prevent disorderly capital expansion, said Guo Shuqing, head of the banking regulatory body, in an interview with CCTV. The central bank will encourage lenders to accelerate digital transformation to improve services, broaden the financing channels of private enterprises by releasing the potential of securities market, private equity funds, and angel funds, said Guo according to the state broadcaster. Financial innovation should be encouraged under the premise of "people first", as any illegal and irregulated innovation will hurt development in turn, Guo added.

The U.S. failure to contain the pandemic and its politicizing and blame game caused global supply chain disruptions, while its excess easing inflated commodity prices, which placed pressure on Chinese businesses, the Economic Daily said in a commentary. Western media hyped up China's below-expectation growth rate in Q3, and irresponsibly said China has lost its recovery momentum, the official newspaper said. China won't let its economy be "talked down" and should focus on promoting reform and innovation and high-quality development, said the newspaper.

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