China's benchmark money market rate climbed to a six-month high on Friday despite attempts by the central bank to calm sentiment, showing signs of a scramble for cash reminiscent of a massive crunch that occurred in June.
The volume-weighted average price of the benchmark seven-day bond repurchase rate - considered the most representative indicator of market liquidity conditions - rose to 8.1277 percent on Friday morning, its highest level since June 21.
(Read more: Marching higher once more: China cash rates)
The third day of sharp rises highlights the difficulty regulators are having gradually raising the cost of short-term credit to rein in speculative forms of finance without setting off destabilizing spikes that infect adjacent markets.
It also comes just as the U.S. Federal Reserve begins to wind down its aggressive easy-money strategy that helped fuel growth in emerging markets, raising concern about an impact on economic sentiment in the world's second-biggest economy.