HK stocks down 1.81% tracking Chinese mainland's market

19:48, January 20, 2010      

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Hong Kong shares ended lower Wednesday, tracking weakness in Chinese mainland's equities markets.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index fell 391.81 points, or 1.81 percent, to close at 21,286.17 on Wednesday. The index rose to its day high of 21,561.56 in the early morning session and fell to the day low of 21,171.30 in the afternoon.

The blue-chip index gained 1 percent to break a five-day losing streak on Tuesday, led by Chinese mainland's banks, which have underperformed the broader market in recent days amid concerns of further monetary tightening.

Turnover rose slightly to 74.62 billion HK dollars (9.62 billion U.S. dollars) from Tuesday's 73.46 billion HK dollars (about 9.47 billion U.S. dollars).

Analysts said they expect the index to find support at the psychologically important 21,000 level the rest of January.

All the four major sub-indices lost ground. The finance sub- index fell most at 1.95 percent, followed by the commerce and industry at 1.86 percent, the properties at 1.44 percent and the utilities at 0.64 percent.

Chinese banks led the Hong Kong market's decline Wednesday. Citic Bank tumbled 4.1 percent to 5.61 HK dollars. Bank of China lost 3.4 percent to 3.95 HK dollars. China Construction Bank fell 3.1 percent to 6.22 HK dollars, and ICBC was down 2.6 percent at 5.89 HK dollars.

Heavyweight HSBC fell 1.01 percent to 87.85 HK dollars.

Retailer Esprit fell 4.4 percent to 54.50 HK dollars, leading the day's blue-chip decliners.

Source: Xinhua
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