Hong Kong shares hit by China data, US rate talk

GMT 14:47 2015 Wednesday ,11 March

Arab Today, arab today Hong Kong shares hit by China data, US rate talk

Poor Chinese economic data
Hong Kong - AFP

Hong Kong stocks slipped 0.75 percent Wednesday as another batch of poor Chinese economic data added to concerns about a likely US interest rate hike in the summer.
The benchmark Hang Seng Index fell 179.01 points to 23,717.97 on turnover of HK$78.26 billion ($10.10 billion). However, Shanghai added 0.15 percent thanks to a late rally.
Traders were already in selling mode at the start of the day as they bet on the Federal Reserve lifting rates as early as June following Friday's strong US jobs data, while worries about Greece also persist.
On Wall Street the Dow tumbled 1.85 percent, the S&P 500 fell 1.70 percent and the Nasdaq lost 1.67 percent.
Hong Kong losses were exacerbated after China said growth in industrial output, retail sales and fixed asset investment all fell to multi-year lows in January-February.
The indicators are the latest showing the world's number-two economy is suffering a severe slowdown, with factory gate inflation hitting a five-and-a-half-year low in February and imports also plunging more than expected.
Among Hong Kong-listed firms HSBC fell 1.71 percent to HK$65.95, Lenovo lost 2.92 percent to HK$11.30, PetroChina slipped 1.33 percent to HK$8.19 and insurer China Life was 0.65 percent lower at HK$30.40.
However, Internet giant Tencent added 0.46 percent to HK$131.70 and Henderson Land put on 1.08 percent to HK$51.60.
In mainland China, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index edged up 4.83 points to 3,290.90 on turnover of 327.6 billion yuan ($53.2 billion).
The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China's second exchange, eased 0.17 percent, or 2.83 points, to 1,689.15 on turnover of 307.1 billion yuan.
"Weak data suggests that more monetary easing has become a high-probability event," Northeast Securities analyst Shen Zhengyang told AFP.
"New share issues today also weighed on the market," he added.
Some 10 companies offered new shares for subscription on Wednesday with more to follow.
Airlines were among the biggest winners. On the Shanghai market, China Southern Airlines surged 9.94 percent to 5.75 yuan while Spring Airlines jumped 9.17 percent to 86.30 yuan.
Shanghai-listed banks rose on easing hopes. China Construction bank gained 1.26 percent to 5.64 yuan and Bank of China rose 2.04 percent to 4.01 yuan.


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