Henderson best blue chip with 6.82pc gain The Hong Kong share market rose 0.77 per cent to a record high yesterday, as Henderson Land Development led a rally in property stocks on optimism over a land auction on Tuesday. The Hang Seng Index rose 159.5 points to close at a new high of 20,841.08, surpassing the previous record of 20,821.05 reached on January 24. The market's value swelled to a record HK$14.6 trillion. The biggest contributor to the day's HK$63.99 billion market turnover was from PetroChina, in which HK$11.7 billion worth of shares changed hands. HSBC Holdings was the second-most active stock on turnover of HK$2.97 billion. PetroChina surged 13.9 per cent to HK$10.16 after the firm revealed details of a big oil discovery. The H-share index rose 2.46 per cent or 249.23 points to 10,383.63. PetroChina contributed 158.82 points to the gain. The Hang Seng Index closed up 1.53 per cent on the week while the H-share index gained 2.39 per cent. Henderson was the day's best-performing blue chip, leaping 6.82 per cent to HK$54.05 in heavy trade. Merrill Lynch this week raised Henderson's price target by 28 per cent to HK$66.50, saying the market had overlooked the developer's large mainland asset base. Other developers also gained before the land auction next week. 'Investors are bullish on the result of the sale,' said Ricky Tam Siu-hing, an investment director at Champlus Asset Management. 'Their gains more than offset the losses of heavyweights China Mobile and HSBC.'' The auction of the West Kowloon site was triggered by Wheelock Properties in March after the developer submitted a minimum guaranteed bid of HK$2.6 billion. It will be the first urban site put up for auction this year and which analysts said could fetch up to HK$5.2 billion. Cheung Kong (Holdings) rose 2.91 per cent to a record closing high of HK$109.50. Wheelock and Co gained 2.49 per cent to a historic high of HK$18.96. Sun Hung Kai Properties climbed 1.8 per cent to HK$96.25. 'Henderson jumped even sharper, fuelled by an investment rating upgrade by an investment bank to HK$66.50,' said Andy Lam, an associate director of investment research at Harris Fraser (International). Gains on Wall Street also helped buoy Hong Kong and other Asian markets - South Korea rose 0.51 per cent, Taiwan climbed 1.76 per cent and Singapore gained 1.02 per cent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Thursday hit a historic high for the third consecutive session, mainly due to new economic data suggesting continued growth for the United States economy, coupled with weak inflation indicators. 'Investor sentiment has turned positive after the plunge on Monday,' Mr Lam said. 'If the central government does not introduce any new austerity measures in the near future, the Hang Seng Index should be able to breach a new high above 21,000.' Hong Kong stocks fell 1.01 per cent on Monday after the central bank ordered mainland commercial banks to increase their reserve requirements. From May 15, mainland lenders have to set aside 11 per cent of deposits as reserves, an increase of half a percentage point. Analysts expect the mainland A-share markets to rally on Tuesday when trading resumes after the week-long Labour Day holiday.