China stocks end higher as data signals economic momentum
SHANGHAI, May 11 (Reuters) - China stocks ended firmer on Tuesday, underpinned by gains in consumer and healthcare firms, after data showed that factory-gate prices in the world's second-largest economy last month had reached the highest level since October 2017.
** The blue-chip CSI300 index .CSI300 was up 0.6% at 5,023.06, snapping a four-day losing streak, while the Shanghai Composite Index .SSEC firmed 0.4% to 3,441.85.
** Leading the gains, the CSI300 consumer staples index .CSI000912 and the CSI300 healthcare index .CSI300HC closed up 3.3% and 2%, respectively.
** Top liquor maker Kweichow Moutai Co Ltd 600519.SS rebounded 4.3% after foreign buying via the Stock Connect that links Shanghai and Hong Kong. nL1N2MY0AC
** China's factory-gate prices rose at the fastest rate in three and a half years in April as the economy gathers momentum after strong first-quarter growth, but economists downplayed the risks to inflation. nL1N2MW0LW
** The medium-term correction could be drawing to a close, though investors need pay attention to the central bank's monetary policy direction, as commodities price hikes led to talks of inflation, Wanlian Securities said in a note.
** China's population grew at its slowest since the 1950s as births declined, sowing doubt over Beijing's ability to power its economy as it succumbs to the same ageing trends afflicting developed nations such as Japan. nL1N2MY048
** Around the region, MSCI's Asia ex-Japan stock index .MIAPJ0000PUS was weaker by 1.72%, while Japan's Nikkei index .N225 closed 3.08% lower.
** At 0706 GMT, the yuan CNY=CFXS was quoted at 6.4302 per U.S. dollar, 0.23% weaker than the previous close of 6.4156.
** As of 0707 GMT, China's A-shares were trading at a premium of 36.94% over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares.
(Reporting by Luoyan Liu and Andrew Galbraith, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)