China's stock markets decide that steps toward installing new leadership means business as usual

11/14/2012 7:13 pm EST

Focus: STOCKS

Jim Jubak

Founder and Editor, JubakPicks.com

Another step toward the transfer of power to a new generation of Chinese leaders took place today—and China’s stock markets reacted with a rally. The biggest winners in Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index were financial, real estate, and export companies. The market, at least, sees the new leadership as likely to continue the economic policies of the last leadership.

Today 2,270 delegates to the 18th Party Congress voted for the 205-member committee that will, on Thursday pick a new Politburo and finally the seven members of the Politburo’s Standing Committee, the small group that rules China. As expected Vice President Xi Jinping and Vice Premier Li Keqiang were both elected to central committee as the first step of their journey to the Standing Committee. The only real suspense left for Thursday is whether or not outgoing President Hu Jintao will hold onto his position as chairman of the Central Military Commission, the group that makes decisions for China’s military. Hu’s predecessor, Jiang Zemin, held onto the post for two years after turning over control of the party to Hu in 2002.

So what stocks went up most in Hong Kong on this confirmation of the expected?

Aluminum Corp. of China (ACH) climbed 2.8%. China Construction Bank (939.HK in Hong Kong or CECHY in New York) rose 3.2%. China Overseas Land & Investment (688.HK in Hong Kong or CAOVY in New York) rose 2.7%. Consumer-oriented stocks were off or relatively weak. Tingyi Holding (322.HK), for example, was up just 1.1% and Want Want Holdings (151.HK) was off 1.1%.

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