Hong Kong stocks closed higher in heavy turnover yesterday as buying of banking counters helped the market rise for a fifth straight day. HSBC and Hang Seng Bank led the advance after both registered impressive profit growth in their interim results on Monday. The broader market ran into profit-taking in the mid-morning and brokers said it could now be set to enter a consolidation phase. The benchmark Hang Seng Index closed 63.17 points or 0.57 per cent higher at 11,134.6. At one stage it had been 146.78 points up. Turnover rose to a healthy $5.93 billion from the revised $5.32 billion on Monday. South China Brokerage director Howard Gorges said: 'The strength is all in the banks. Their turnover was enormous, but we would need to see some broader strength in the market before we can see a breakout.' HSBC gained $4.50 to $132.50 after reaching an historic high of $134. A hefty $1.97 billion worth of shares in the bank changed hands. Hang Seng Bank was less impressive but still rose $1 to $80. DBS Securities research director Percy Au-young said: 'Hang Seng Bank has not performed as well as HSBC because it will find it difficult to maintain its profit-growth for the whole year.' Bank of East Asia advanced on follow-through buying, adding 40 cents to $28.85 in heavy turnover. Brokers said the profit-taking that pared early gains was natural after the market's strong run-up. Mr Gorges said: 'We have run into some profit-taking at the 11,200 level, but there is nothing wrong with that after a 500-point rise.' Brokers said the weakness in Japan's Nikkei-225 yesterday gave some investors an excuse to sell Hong Kong stocks. Among the 33 Hang Seng Index constituents, 10 advanced, 6 closed unchanged, and 17 lost value. The Hang Seng financial sub-index, which measures the three blue-chip banks, led all market indicators adding 2.73 per cent. The Hang Seng property sub-index lost 0.17 per cent to 20,506.09. Great Eagle suffered one of the biggest losses in the index as the boost generated by its proposed spin-off plans petered out. Great Eagle dropped 65 cents to $22.70. Sun Hung Kai Properties lost 25 cents to $74.75, and New World Development shed 20 cents to $35.80. Trade in the second and third line counters remained relatively slow, with attention on the blue chips. Brokers said the market was likely to take a breather but they did not rule out a continued advance. Schroder Securities Asia associate director Peter So said: 'If the Nikkei stabilises, Hong Kong might be able to make further gains.'