A fall on Wall Street and selling pressure on HSBC pulled Hong Kong shares down 1.81 per cent yesterday. The Hang Seng Index shed 168.16 points to 9,076.33. Turnover edged up slightly but remained thin, at $3.14 billion. Hong Kong was one of several regional markets that fell yesterday, as pre-holiday sluggishness and a 1.7 per cent fall in the Dow Jones Industrial Average took their toll. 'On the bright side, people are accumulating [Hong Kong stocks] at 9,000,' an investment bank trader said. 'On the other side there seems to be a lot of selling pressure on HSBC.' HSBC shed $3 to $185.50, its lowest level in nearly three months. The trader said HSBC was trading at 2.39 times book value. This seemed high compared with local banks, such as Dao Heng Bank, which was trading at 1.14 times book value and global banks such as Germany's Deutsche Bank which traded at 1.59 times book value. 'A correction [for HSBC] to even 1.8 times book would mean a 20 per cent drop from this level,' he said. The trader's house had a sell on HSBC. Clarion Securities banking analyst Zuhair Khan said there were only two banks to which it would be fair to compare HSBC on book value basis - Standard Chartered and the Citibank component of the CitiGroup. Those banks had the closest asset and exposure mix, he said. 'I wouldn't term HSBC too expensive on a price to book basis . . . I don't think a comparison with Hong Kong is at all valid,' Mr Khan said. He has a 'buy' recommendation on the bank. Mr Khan expected HSBC's trading outlook would be cloudy in the short term ahead of bank earning results later this month. 'People are concerned before earnings reports, there's a general uncertainty,' he said. Signs of disappointing loan growth of British banks, which were in the midst of their own reporting season, had also hurt HSBC, he said. Traders pointed out there was little arbitrage activity yesterday, as the futures market and cash market traded closely all day. A futures dealer said: 'So the selling was real selling - none of it was for arbitrage purposes.' Properties fell 2.22 per cent as a sector yesterday, to 11,806.6 points, as interbank rates rose for the third straight day. The strongest performers were red chips, which fell 1.25 per cent as a sector. Guangnan Holdings was the star of the sector, rising 5.26 per cent to 50 cents in a sign some investors were counting on a strong restructuring story. Local funds had been the chief buyers of the stock, a trader said.