SHANGHAI, July 29 (Reuters) - China’s benchmark index posted the biggest gain in more than a week on Wednesday as investors bought up shares after recent slumps, while the tech-focused STAR board soared on new listings.
** At the close, the Shanghai Composite index was up 2.06% at 3,294.55, its best daily performance since July 20. ** The blue-chip CSI300 index was up 2.42%, the largest daily gain since last Monday, with its financial sector sub-index higher by 2.22%, the consumer staples sector up 0.82%, the real estate index up 1.12% and the healthcare sub-index up 4.04%. ** The smaller Shenzhen index ended up 2.9% and the start-up board ChiNext Composite index was higher by 3.783%. ** Shanghai’s tech-focused STAR 50 Index surged by 5.45% on the day, with shares of newly-listed Eyebright Medical Technology Beijing Co Ltd soared by 616.8%. ** “It’s a technical rebound following the big correction last week,” said Ren Chengde, an analyst with China Galaxy Securities, adding however that there was uncertainty on the upward momentum. “Many investors are taking the wait-and-see mode in front of returned coronavirus cases and the economic impact it would bring.” ** China reported 101 new COVID-19 cases in the mainland for July 28, the highest in over three-and-a-half months, with many of the new infections coming from the far western region of Xinjiang. ** The benchmark index slumped by nearly 4% last Friday, as investors fretted over an escalation in tensions between Beijing and Washington after China ordered the U.S. to close its consulate in Chengdu in a tit-for-tat response. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 0.1%, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed down 1.15%. ** At 07:17 GMT, the yuan was quoted at 7.0028 per U.S. dollar, 0.01% weaker than the previous close of 7.002. (Reporting by Cheng Leng and Andrew Galbraith Editing by Gareth Jones)