Chinese small investors look for way out of stocks as Beijing tries to shore up weak prices

MarketsAssociated Press

Shares in big Chinese state companies have soared after weekend promises of government action to halt a slide in stock prices, but many others sank as jittery small investors tried to cut their losses.

The market benchmark closed up 2.4 percent on Monday but was down 27 percent from its June 12 peak. That came after a group of 21 state-owned brokerages pledged Saturday to buy stocks. On Sunday, the central bank promised more credit to finance trading. Regulators have reduced the number of planned share sales to ease fears of a glut.

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Shares of state companies such as PetroChina Ltd., Asia's biggest oil producer, rose by up to 10 percent while smaller companies fell.

Small investors said they are waiting for a price rebound so they can sell.