(Yicai Global) April 1 -- China Vanke's shares surged after a company staff partnership bought CNY1.6 billion (USD225.7 million) worth of the property giant's stock yesterday in a bid to stabilize the price. Vanke's equity had been tumbling on concern that the Covid-19 pandemic will sting the property giant's earnings.
The Shenzhen-based company [SHE:000002] closed 3.8 percent higher today at CNY26.63 (USD3.75), after gaining as much as 5.1 percent in intraday trading. The benchmark Shenzhen Component Index was little changed. Vanke's shares plunged 13 percent last month.
Shenzhen Ying'an Financial Advisory Enterprise, an employee stock ownership program Vanke launched in May 2014, paid CNY25 each for 65 million shares, or 0.58 percent of Vanke's total outstanding stock, via the Shenzhen Stock Exchange's large volume trading system yesterday, the firm said in a statement. So far, Ying'an Financial directly owns 0.58 percent of Vanke, with another 4.39 percent of shares in its control through brokers' assets management plans.
Ying'an Financial, whose first group of career partners included 1,320 employees, including eight senior executives in 2014, bought Vanke shares through brokerages that year and in 2015.
Vanke's sales, new home deliveries, start and resumption of project construction and cash flow have all been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, President Zhu Jiusheng said at the company's annual earnings press conference on March 17.
Sales fell CNY510 billion (USD71.8 billion) in February and March compared with a year earlier, and the delivery of new homes to 39,000 customers is expected to be delayed, Zhu said.
The firm's profit growth slowed for the second year in a row. Net profit rose 15.1 percent to CNY38.9 billion (USD5.48 billion) last year based on a 23.6 percent jump in revenue to CNY367.9 billion, according to an earlier annual report.
Editors: Dou Shicong, Peter Thomas