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Fear of backlash pushes China to crack down on frothy markets

Authorities hope to head off possible bubbles in the stock and metals markets

China's government worries that if retail stock investors suffer in a financial bubble collapse, the blame will fall on Beijing.   © Reuters

SHANGHAI -- Chinese officials are clamping down on speculative stock and metal trading on fears that investor anger in the wake of any financial collapse would stoke discontent with the government.

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, a major state-owned lender, notified customers at the end of July that it would cease setting up new accounts for financial products linked to platinum and palladium prices.

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