Hang Seng Index

Banks support Hang Seng as local developers hammered

PUBLISHED : Monday, 29 October, 2012, 4:47pm
UPDATED : Monday, 29 October, 2012, 5:47pm

Hong Kong shares slipped on Monday as local developers tumbled on fears that new measures to cool soaring property prices will sap demand, but broader losses were limited by strong earnings by Chinese banks.

The Hang Seng Index ended down 0.2 per cent at 21,511.1, the lowest close since October 17. The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong finished up 0.9 per cent at 10,546.2.

In the mainland, the CSI300 Index of the top Shanghai and Shenzhen listings shed 0.5 per cent, its fifth-straight loss. The Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.4 per cent. They each closed at their lowest since September 26.

Hong Kong real estate stocks reeled after the city’s government imposed a new 15 per cent tax on foreign and corporate real estate buyers and stiffened the resale stamp duty fees in the hope of calming property prices, which have surpassed historical highs hit in 1997. New World Development, which had soared more than 100 per cent year to date, dived 6.4 per cent.

Agricultural Bank of China gained 3.1 per cent and China Construction Bank rose 0.9 per cent after both “Big Four” Chinese banks posted third-quarter earnings over the weekend that topped expectations.