China’s stocks fell, with the benchmark index closing below 2,000 for the first time since 2009, as the value of shares traded slumping to the lowest in four years. Material and health-care companies led losses. Inner Mongolia Baotou Steel Rare-Earth Hi-Tech sank 4.5 per cent, while Shandong Dong-E E-Jiao, a traditional medicine-maker, declined 3.1 per cent. JiuGuiJiu tumbled 10 per cent after the Beijing News said the liquor maker will halt production to replace equipment. The Shanghai Composite Index dropped 1.3 per cent to 1,991.17 at the 3pm (HK time) close, its lowest level since January 23, 2009. Shares worth 33.1 billion yuan changed hands in the measure yesterday, the least since November 7, 2008. The CSI 300 Index declined 1.2 per cent to 2,150.64, while the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of Chinese companies traded in Hong Kong was little changed. “Investors have no confidence in long-term growth prospects and the government isn’t doing much to reverse the situation,” said Wang Zheng, Shanghai-based chief investment officer at Jingxi Investment Management, which manages US$120 million. “Trading values may fall even further.” The Shanghai Composite is heading for a third straight annual loss after declining 9.5 per cent this year. The gauge has plunged 42 per cent through yesterday since August 4, 2009, when the gauge reached its highest level since the global financial crisis. The MSCI All-Country World Index has rallied 21 per cent in the same time.