12 December 2018

HSI strengthens as property developers take off

Hong Kong stocks added to Tuesday’s 380-point gain, buoyed by news that China’s January exports beat expectations, coupled with a rally in property counters.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index rose 322 points, or 1.47 percent, to 22,285 Wednesday, helping it recover losses in the previous week in just two sessions. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index, the main gauge for H shares, picked up 1.42 percent to close at 9,996.

The Shanghai Composite Index added 0.30 percent to 2,109 points.

All but five of the 50 blue chips recorded gains, with real estate the best performing sector. China Overseas Land & Investment (00688.HK) gained the most, soaring 7.5 percent after it said its contracted sales hit 15.2 billion yuan (US$2.5 billion) in January, up 120 percent from the previous month.

The news produced a ripple effect in the sector, with China Resources Land (01109.HK) ending the day 4.7 percent higher. Smaller plays such as Fantasia Holdings Group (01777.HK), Shimao Property (00813.HK) and Country Garden rose in a range of 4.5 percent to 10 percent.

Mainland stocks found equally strong support as investors piled into local property developers. They rose after Janet Yellen, the new Federal Reserve chairman, said the United States central bank will not raise interest rates in the near future.

Wharf Holdings (00004.HK) closed 4.7 percent higher, New World Development (00017.HK), Swire Properties (01972.HK) and Henderson Land Development (00012.HK) all saw notable increases.

Meanwhile, nuclear energy firm CGN Mining (01164.HK) rallied as much as 33 percent after reports that its parent, China Guangdong Nuclear Power, may go public in Hong Kong in the second half. The counter closed 16.7 percent higher.

China Mengniu Dairy (02319.HK) advanced 3 percent after French food group Danone said it has agreed to increase its stake in the company to 9.9 percent from 4 percent and become its second largest shareholder.

– Contact the writer at [email protected]



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