Market abuzz with talk of HK$4b stake sale

PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 March, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 20 March, 2009, 12:00am

There were rumours yesterday that a substantial shareholder in China Mobile was trying to raise about HK$4 billion by selling part of its stake in the mainland's largest mobile operator.

Fund managers said some investment banks, including Morgan Stanley and UBS, had approached them about buying discounted China Mobile shares from an undisclosed investor during the trading hours before the stock closed 2.06 per cent lower at HK$66.70.

'There were two versions doing the rounds,' said a fund manager who was approached. 'Some suggested 40 million shares were on offer but some indicated a larger size, of 66 million shares.'

The fund manager said no more details were provided about the identity of the vendor or the price range.

'Although it isn't really a sizeable deal, I think investors are becoming more cautious as the Hang Seng Index has fought back 1,800 points from the recent low,' said another hedge fund manager.