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China boosts thermal coal trading fees amid record volumes

The Zhengzhou CommodityExchange will begin charging transaction fees for thermal coalcontracts that were opened and closed in the same day, Bloomberg Newsreported Sept. 27, citing a statement made by the bourse on its website.

The stock exchange's actioncomes amid a record trading volume high as prices climb to the highest they'vebeen in two years, the report said. The market is likely trying to curtailspeculation after the spike in trading volumes, Bloomberg News reported, citingICIS China analyst Deng Shun.

Coaltrading over the past few weeks has shown a definite increase as governmentpolicies regarding productionare expected to lead to shortages.

On Sept.22, front-month thermal coal futures on the Zhengzhou exchange rose to 532.40yuan per tonne, only slightly lower than 532.60 yuan per tonne, the reportsaid. It continued that course data showed that a record 1.217 million thermalcoal contracts changed hands with a total turnover of almost 64 billion yuan.

Accordingto the report, China's economic stimulus and industrial reforms were expectedto lead to commodity shortages which made investing in the country'scommodities exchanges attractive, driving prices up and creating a fear of aneconomic bubble.

Theauthorities responded by raising transaction fees and margins, the report said.

Asof Sept. 27, US$1 is equivalent to 6.67 Chinese yuan renminbi.