Hong Kong’s stocks posted their biggest gain in almost two weeks as traders chased banks, the cheapest sector, to weather sluggish economic growth and the political unrest in the city. The Hang Seng Index added 0.9 per cent, or 231.22 points, to 26,797.95 at the close on Thursday, its best performance since October 11. The Shanghai Composite Index slipped less than 0.1 per cent to 2,940.91. With no clear signs in sight of how to resolve the anti-government protest that has scared away tourists and forced closures of shops in the former British colony, bargain hunting prevailed the market as traders bet that the extremely low valuations would resist the gyration on the market. A Bloomberg gauge of Hong Kong-traded 20 banks was valued at 5.3 times earnings, half as expensive as the multiple for Hang Seng gauge, Bloomberg data showed. “Optimistic outlook for net interest margin expansion as well as perceived improvement in the trade front are giving banking shares support,” said Gerry Alfonso, director of the international department at Shenwan Hongyuan Group. Is money fleeing Hong Kong? Not according to the initial public offerings dipping into one of Asia’s deepest capital pools HSBC Holdings gained 1.1 per cent to HK$61.85. Industrial and Commercial Bank of China rose 1.8 per cent to HK$5.60 and China Construction Bank climbed 1 per cent to HK$6.35. Fulum Group, whose restaurants have been targeted by protesters in Hong Kong, added 1.7 per cent to 29.5 Hong Kong cents. The Chinese restaurant group put eight properties worth HK$2.57 billion (US$327.78 million) up for sale. Its restaurants were vandalised by protesters who believe it is linked to the mainlanders. Hong Kong retailers that have borne brunt of protesters’ ire look to sell properties, end leases Sino Biopharmaceutical, the best performer on the Hang Seng Index this year, rose 1.1 per cent to HK$10.92 after the founder of the drug maker and his wife granted their 24-year-old son Eric Tse a US$3.8 billion gift in the form of 2.7 billion shares in the company. They also appointed Tse an executive director and member of the company's executive board committee, according to a Tuesday statement. The stock has more than doubled in 2019. In the mainland, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank rose 2.6 per cent to 16.87 yuan. The lender will sell up to 50 billion yuan (US$7.1 billion) in convertible bonds in what may end up as China’s biggest-ever sales of such debts. The offering, which was already approved by the regulators overseeing the stock market and the financial sectors, will be conducted Friday and next Monday, the lender said in an exchange statement. Stocks Blog: Tencent falls through key resistance level; bargain hunters boost AAC Technologies Tesla’s Chinese suppliers surged after the US new-energy car maker surprisingly posted third-quarter profit against the analysts’ estimates of losses. Ningbo Xusheng Auto Technology, a maker of mould parts that derives 61 per cent of the revenues from Tesla, jumped 6.7 per cent to 29.88 yuan and Lens Technology added 2.2 per cent to 12.95 yuan. With the earnings season getting under way, the 35 companies on the 300-member CSI 300 Index that have already posted quarterly results reported 25 per cent profit growth, accelerating from an increase of 19 per cent for the previous three-month period, according to Bloomberg data. That beat the forecast by 2 per cent, the data showed.