Hang Seng reclaims 24,000 as technology sector rallies

Tencent jumped 2.8 per cent to an all-time high HK$236.6; AAC Technologies rose 2 per cent to HK$102.3, its best ever close

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 20 April, 2017, 9:24am
UPDATED : Thursday, 20 April, 2017, 5:13pm

Technology stocks rallied in Hong Kong on Thursday, with Tencent Holdings surging to an all-time high, while the mainland market found some breathing space after a four-day losing streak.

The Hang Seng Index reclaimed the psychologically important 24,000 threshold to end at 24,056.98, up 1 per cent or 231.1 points. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index climbed 0.7 per cent to 10,056.2. Total turnover shrank 6 per cent to HK$67.7 billion.

We may see more ups and downs around the 24,000 level before May
Francis Kwok Sze-chi, Freeman Securities

The tech sector was the major driving force. Tencent was the most traded blue chip, jumping 2.8 per cent to end at an all-time high of HK$236.6.

AAC Technologies Holdings, the major provider of components for iPhone, rose 2 per cent to HK$102.3, its best ever closing level. Sunny Optical Technology gained 4.7 per cent to HK$59.5, also its highest closing level in history.

“Hong Kong stocks found a chance for technical rebound as the mainland market stabilised today. But the turnover was not high, so a big rally is unlikely to come. We may see more ups and downs around the 24,000 level before May,” said Francis Kwok Sze-chi, managing director at Freeman Securities.

Several investment banks have raised their price targets for Tencent. Nomura, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America Merrill Lynch all said Tencent should post better-than-expected earnings growth from its gaming and advertising segments.

Among other big movers, Geely Automobile outperformed its blue-chip peers to close 3.2 per cent higher at HK$11.6.

Watch and jewellery sellers also gained. Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group surged 5.7 per cent to HK$8.7, the highest level since mid-2015. Luk Fook Holdings International gained 2 per cent to HK$27.6 after it posted better than expected sales in the fourth quarter last year.

Investors need to watch the recent weakness in the Hong Kong dollar, which indicates money has been flowing out of the city, according to Linus Yip Sheung-chi, chief strategist at First Shanghai Securities.

“The Hong Kong dollar has been weak lately. Although the Hibor [Hong Kong Inter-bank Offered Rate] hasn’t spiked yet, foreign funds are leaving Hong Kong, which is not a good thing for the stock market,” Yip said.

On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite Index closed up 0.04 per cent, or 1.4 points, at 3,172.1, ending four straight days of losses, thanks to a rally in the liquor and health care sectors.

The CSI 300 Index, which tracks large companies in Shanghai and Shenzhen, ended 0.5 per cent higher at 3,461.6.

The Shenzhen Component Index rose 0.1 per cent to 10,359.1, with the start-up ChiNext index ending at 1,850.4, up 0.3 per cent.

Liquor maker Luzhou Laojiao soared 5.4 per cent to 45.9 yuan, its best closing level since August 2011, while Kweichow Moutai improved on Wednesday’s historic high by advancing 2.4 per cent to 415.3 yuan.

Shanghai-listed Mayinglong Pharmaceutical Group, which trades under the stock connect scheme, jumped 10 per cent, the maximum permitted daily increase, to 23.8 yuan.