China’s market regulator said it would continue to stabilise the stock market for “a number of years”.It said the role of the state-backed China Securities Finance Corp to stabilise the market would not change.

China says it will stabilise stock market

However, it added that it would allow market forces to play a bigger role in setting stock prices.

The comments come after wild swings on the stock market earlier this month, which saw the main index slump 8.5% in one day.

“With market fluctuations gradually shifting to normal, from wild and abnormal, we should let the market exercise its function of self-adjustment,” the China Securities Regulatory Commission told a news conference in Beijing.

On Friday, mainline shares edged higher as the country’s central bank raised the trading range of the yuan.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite closed up 0.3% at 3,965.33 points, although Hong Kong’s Hang Seng dipped 0.1% to 23,991.03.

The central bank set the yuan rate at 6.3975 to the dollar, compared with Thursday’s close of 6.3982.

The rate is set daily and allows a 4% fluctuation. Over the past week, the bank had guided the yuan to a record low, sparking fears of a currency war to help lagging Chinese exports.

Japanese shares traded lower, with the Nikkei 225 index closing 0.4% lower at 20,519.45 points.

Investors are anticipating Monday’s release of Japan’s economic growth for the past three months.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 also fell by 0.5%, finishing at 5,360.90 points, as investors took a cue from Wall Street’s flat close and the continuing uncertainty over the yuan.

The Chinese currency is important to Australia, as China is the main export market for the country’s natural resources.

In South Korea, the Kospi index remained closed on Friday, ahead of a national holiday on Saturday.