Hang Seng Index

Bargain hunters and upbeat trade figures drive Hong Kong and mainland stocks higher

Technology stocks recover from last week’s sharp losses

PUBLISHED : Friday, 08 December, 2017, 9:11am
UPDATED : Friday, 08 December, 2017, 10:57pm

Hong Kong’s markets rose for a second day on Friday as investors continued to seek bargains in tech and insurance stocks.

Mainland markets also ended higher following better-than-expected China trade data, which eased fears over a slowing economy because of the crackdown on financial risks and factory pollution.

The Hang Seng Index rose 1.2 per cent, or 336.66 points, to 28,639.85 although it still posted its biggest weekly loss in four months. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index gained 1.3 per cent, or 138.84 points to 11,289.57.

“The market is being levered by several big technology companies,” said Gordon Tsui, managing director at Hantec Pacific.

Technology stocks continued their recovery from sharp losses last week. Internet giant Tencent Holdings advanced 4.2 per cent to HK$394. Apple parts supplier AAC Technologies Holdings jumped 4.1 per cent to HK$148.90, although it was still down for a third straight week. Sunny Optical Technology (Group) added 3.9 per cent to HK$116.

Insurers also rebounded as investors snapped up shares. Ping An Insurance shot up 4.9 per cent to HK$78.40, AIA Group gained 1.6 per cent to HK$61.80 and China Life Insurance added 1.9 per cent to HK$24.65.

Mainland stocks rallied following upbeat November trade figures. China’s exports grew 12.3 per cent year on year in November, handily beating analysts’ forecasts of a 5 per cent increase, official data showed on Friday. Exports grew at their fastest pace since March.

Imports, however, outpaced exports growing at 17.7 per cent year on year in November, exceeding expectations of a 11.3 per cent jump and rising at the fastest pace since September.

The Shanghai Composite Index rebounded 0.6 per cent, or 17.94 points, to 3,289.99, while the CSI 300 – which tracks large companies listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen – climbed 0.8 per cent, or 32.32 points, to 4,003.38, past the crucial 4,000 level.

The Shenzhen Composite Index advanced 1.2 per cent, or 23.09 points, to 1,891.51, and the Nasdaq-style ChiNext added 0.9 per cent, or 15.17 points, to 1,792.16.

Heavyweights Kweichow Moutai, the Chinese premium alcohol giant, gained 1.7 per cent to 627.16 yuan and Anhui Conch Cement, mainland’s largest cement manufacturer, rose 0.2 per cent to 29.46 yuan.

The property sector also witnessed strong gains. Hainan HNA Infrastructure Investment Group surged 5 per cent to 14.01 yuan and Shimao Property Holdings inched up 0.8 per cent to 5.02 yuan.

Other Asian markets were also positive on Friday. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 rose 1.4 per cent to 22,811.08, South Korea’s Kospi edged up 0.08 per cent to 2,464.00 and the Sydney All Ordinaries added 0.3 per cent to 6,077.41.