Hong Kong stocks shed 0.63% after range trading

20:39, November 05, 2009      

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Hong Kong stocks finished down 0.63 percent on Thursday, after the Wall Street narrowed its gains overnight on news that the Federal Reserve kept the interest rate unchanged at the extremely low level.

The positive comments by the Federal Reserve on the economic recovery prospects failed to lend support to the market, with the Dow narrowing its gains to finish up 0.31 percent overnight and leading most of the Asian markets to end lower.

The Hang Seng Index opened down 0.97 percent on Thursday and moved between 21,372.99 and 21,549.10 before ending down 0.63 percent at 21,479.08.

Turnover totaled 60.77 billion HK dollars (7.79 billion U.S. dollars), compared with Wednesday's 60.06 billion HK dollars (7.7 billion U.S. dollars).

All the four major stock categories finished lower, with the finance sub-index down 0.51 percent, the utilities down 0.77 percent, the properties down 1.32 percent and the commerce and industry issues down 0.59 percent.

Banking giant HSBC shed 0.76 percent to close at 85.25 HK dollars and its local unit Hang Seng Bank was down 0.1 HK dollars, or 0.09 percent, at 112.6 HK dollars.

Market heavyweight China Mobile was down 1.01 percent at 73.15 HK dollars. The two heavyweights contributed a large part of the downside pressure to the Hang Seng Index.

China Unicom, the smaller rival of China Mobile, surged 3.78 percent on the upgrading of its rating to BUY by Citigroup and comments that the launch of iPhone may help the company.

The mainland banking shares ended mixed, with China Construction Bank down 1.03 percent, Bank of China up 0.22 percent and leading lender ICBC flat.

The oil giants were also mixed. Business conglomerate PetroChina was up 0.52 percent, and Sinopec, whose business scope covers mainly refining, was up 0.6 percent at 6.73 HK dollars. Offshore oil producer CNOOC edged down 0.17 percent to 11.86 HK dollars.

The Hong Kong-headquartered Bank of East Asia surged 3.33 percent to close at 27.95 HK dollars on buying by a key institutional investor.

Cheung Kong, the flagship of Hong Kong's richest man Li Ka-shing, was down 1.54 percent at 95.75 HK dollars. Leading local residential housing developer SHK Properties was also down 1.73 percent at 113.5 HK dollars. (7.8 HK dollars = 1 U.S. dollar)

Source: Xinhua
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