11 December 2018

HSI hits four-month low as market sentiment turns sour

Hong Kong shares continued their slide on Friday as investors took their cue from significant declines in overseas markets overnight.

The Hang Seng Index gave up 283 points or 1.25 percent to close at 22,450 points, its lowest level since September last year. For the week, the benchmark gauge lost 683 points or 2.9 percent.

The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index, the main gauge for H shares, shed 0.94 percent to end at 10,014 points. It shed 1.5 percent for the week. The Shanghai Composite index, on the other hand, finished 0.6 percent higher for the day, closing at 2,054 points.

Lenovo (00992.HK) jumped over 9 percent at one point following news that it bought IBM Corp.’s server units for US$2.3 billion. The counter closed 1.2 percent higher, making it the best-performing blue chip of the day.

Most of the popular sectors like gaming, software and new energy experienced heavy selling pressure.

Among wind power plays, China WindPower Group (00182.HK) dived 8.9 percent, New Environmental Energy (03989.HK) tumbled 6.8 percent and Huadian Fuxin Energy (00816.HK) closed 3.5 percent lower. 

Solar power plays such as GCL-Poly Energy (03800.HK), Xinyi Solar (00968.HK) and Comtec Solar Systems (00712.HK) dropped in a range of 4.1 to 6.3 percent.

Investors went wild over news that internet giant Alibaba, together with Yunfeng Fund, invested HK$1.33 billion (US$171 million) for a 54.3 percent stake in CITIC 21CN (00241.HK). The counter soared more than 500 percent to HK$5.02 right after the market opened before ending 372 percent higher for the day.

Alibaba said the group plans to channel CITIC 21CN’s vast pool of pharmaceutical product data into Alibaba’s e-commerce, cloud computing and big data systems to win new business.

Meanwhile, Tencent (00700.HK), Alibaba’s main rival, slumped over 4 percent, making it the second worst performer among blue chips after hygiene products maker Hengan International Group (01044.HK), which finished 5.9 percent lower for the day.

– Contact the writer at [email protected]



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