China Construction Bank, the country's second-biggest bank by assets, said on Tuesday it had raised 58 billion yuan ($7.7 billion) in the country's largest domestic IPO.

The bank priced its Shanghai initial public offer of 9 billion new A shares, or 3.85 percent of its expanded share capital, at 6.45 yuan, the top of an indicative range.

The offer attracted 2.26 trillion yuan in subscriptions from retail and institutional investors, another record for an IPO in China's domestic stock market.

Construction Bank's offer is part of a string of big IPOs the Chinese authorities are encouraging partly in the hope of cooling the stock market with additional supplies of equity.

The benchmark Shanghai index has more than doubled this year as millions of new investors pour into equities.

The bank's IPO price represents a discount of only 2 percent to the HK$6.84 last closing price of the bank's Hong Kong-listed H shares -- a much smaller discount than those seen in the Shanghai IPOs of most Hong Kong-listed companies.

Nevertheless, the bank's A shares appear set to rise sharply on their Shanghai listing, which is expected next week. The A shares of many dual-listed Chinese financial companies trade at premiums of between 40 and 60 percent to their H shares.

The IPO price values China Construction Bank at 32.91 times its 2006 earnings, diluted to reflect the IPO. Domestic Chinese banking shares typically trade around 50 times 2006 earnings.

Construction Bank's share sale far exceeded China's previous record for a domestic IPO, set by Industrial & Commercial Bank of China when it raised 46.64 billion yuan last October in the domestic portion of a simultaneous offer in Shanghai and Hong Kong.

However, the new record may not last long; on Monday the securities regulator approved a proposal by Shenhua Energy, China's biggest coal producer, for a Shanghai IPO that could raise about 70 billion yuan.

($1=7.52 Yuan)