The Hang Seng Index declined by 0.2 per cent to 26,436.62. However, markets in China reversed early losses, getting small gains by the close. The Shanghai Composite Index ended 0.1 per cent, or 2.84 points, higher at 2,917.32. The Shenzhen Component Index added 0.4 per cent, while the ChiNext Index rose 0.8 per cent.
“Pretty much everyone is in observation mode right now,” said Kevin Leung, executive director of investment strategy at Haitong International Securities. “If the US pulls back scheduled tariffs on Chinese imports on Sunday, the Hang Seng Index stands a chance of rising above the 27,000-point level by the end of this year,” he said.
“The market has priced in all the negatives, but at the same time I can’t see anything substantially positive that could support a rebound,” he added.
Li Ning, a major sports brand in Hong Kong, tumbled 6.3 per cent to HK$23.8, while Anta Sports dropped 4.3 per cent to HK$70.75, and Xtep International Holdings weakened by 2 per cent to HK$3.85.
The Hong Kong-listed shares of Alibaba Group Holding, which owns the South China Morning Post, recorded another loss, following their recent inclusion in the Hang Seng Composite Index. The stock fell 0.6 per cent to HK$195.4, after a previous decline of 0.5 per cent.
The Postal Savings Bank of China, China’s biggest initial public offering since 2010, closed with a slight gain of 2 per cent at 5.61 yuan. New stocks also soared on their first day of trading in China, amidst investors’ cautiousness of late.
Muyuan Foodstuff, one of the largest pork producers in China, fell by 5.3 per cent to 84 yuan, as investors took profits on a strong rally this year amid worries over its future output. An outbreak of African swine flu has swept across China and sent pork prices soaring. The company’s shares have gained 193 per cent so far this year.
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