China’s stocks gained for a fourth time this week, with the benchmark capping a seventh straight weekly gain and a small-cap gauge entering a bull market, as equities continued to step out from last year’s nightmare to be among the world’s best performers in 2019. The Shanghai Composite Index climbed 1.9 per cent, or 53.43 points, to 2,804.23 at the close on Friday, with gains accelerating in afternoon trading. The ChiNext gauge of start-ups in Shenzhen surged 3.1 per cent, taking its gain from an October low to 21 per cent. A 20 per cent gain is the general rule of thumb for entering bull-market territory. Meanwhile, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index added 0.7 per cent, or 186.38 points, to 28,816.30. Turnovers on the mainland’s two exchanges increased to an 11-month high on Friday, with shares worth 622 billion yuan (US$92.6 billion) changing hands, according to Bloomberg data. For the week, the Shanghai benchmark climbed 4.4 per cent gain for a seventh straight winning streak of the five-day period. That was the longest for such a run since August 2017. Chinese stocks have turned into one of the favourite assets among global investors from the most dumped last year, as the government loosens policies to boost growth and the MSCI is considering raising the representation of the stocks in its gauges. The Shanghai Composite has advanced 12.4 per cent so far this year, turning around from a 25 per cent slump in 2018. “The momentum is still there as is indicated by the increase in trading volumes recently,” said Dai Ming, a fund manager at Hengsheng Asset Management in Shanghai. “There are newcomers to this market.” Traders also are keeping a close eye on the ongoing China-US trade talks in Washington. A deal between the world’s two largest economies would remove one of the overhangs that rattled global financial markets last year. US President Donald Trump plans to meet with Liu He, China’s top trade negotiator, on Friday afternoon Washington time, as his administration tries to forge a preliminary agreement with Beijing. Plans for a meeting between the two signal optimism that talks are making sufficient headway. The 90-day trade truce expires on March 1. Foreign investors piling into mainland China stocks – and that’s expected to only grow Chinese brokerages led the gain on the mainland stocks after Yicai reported that the industry’s association was seeking comments from its members on slashing taxes and fees on capital markets. CSC Financial jumped by the 10 per cent daily limit to 16.45 yuan and China Galaxy Securities also climbed by the magnitude to 10.18 yuan. China Great Wall Securities added 10 per cent to 12.45 yuan. In Hong Kong, personal computer maker Lenovo Group rose 5 per cent to HK$7, completing a three-day gain of 22 per cent, as Nomura Holdings and HSBC Holdings raised their recommendations on the stock after the company’s third-quarter earnings beat analysts’ estimates.