Hong Kong Securities Clearing Co, which handles 99.94 per cent of stock exchange transactions, has reported a doubling of its surplus during the six months to December last year. The clearing company said it had an unaudited surplus of $88 million for the interim period, a 203 per cent increase over the previous corresponding period. Revenue for the period increased to $261 million from $177 million. The rise came despite the introduction of discounts on its fees in July last year and was driven by an 87.5 per cent surge in stock exchange turnover. Hongkong Clearing chairman John Chan Cho-chak said: 'The upsurge in stock exchange trading and the levels of capital formation experienced last year have continued into 1997. 'We look forward to the rest of the financial year with confidence.' He said the clearing house would re-examine the need for it to provide centralised stock lending and borrowing services since short selling and other derivatives trading had increased significantly. The results of the consultation on investor participation in the Central Clearing and Settlement System (CCASS) would be submitted to the board of directors of the clearing house this month. Mr Chan said it would take 12 to 15 months for the scheme to be implemented once approval from the board had been secured. At the end of last year, 941 securities had been admitted to the CCASS, compared with 758 at the end of 1995. During the six-month period, an average of 56,487 trades, involving 2.88 billion shares with a market value of $6.33 billion, were processed daily by the CCASS. As of the end of last year, it had 556 participants comprising 486 stockbrokers, 63 custodians, six stock pledgees and one clearing agency.