When the Hong Kong stock market closes on Friday, June 27, an era will have passed. When it opens six days later a new epoch will have begun. The interim will hopefully produce a party of epic proportions. Yet, despite the banqueting, glad-handing and polished words, you can be sure the business of deal making will proceed just the same. There will, however, be a notable exception. The Hong Kong stock market, the barometer of our collective needs, fears and hopes, is to remain closed throughout, only opening on Thursday, July 3. With the world watching, with an untried transition of sovereignty and huge interest to punt on our future, investors will ironically have to book all business through London. Maybe it is churlish, perhaps just plain boring to demand the territory's over-worked stock brokers be dragged into the office at such a moment - journalists will after all - but can we afford such a luxury. Certainly, man cannot live on brokerage commission alone, sure, but never is it more important to keep a market open, to allow investors to vent a view, than during extraordinary events. If they are barred from doing so the danger is huge exaggerated moves are suffered when trading resumes. Hong Kong has a nasty memory of the last time the market was closed for five days during a moment of epochal truth.