Hang Seng Index

Hong Kong stocks retreat on brokerages, property profit-taking

The Hang Seng Index closed down 0.4 per cent, or 108.36 points, at 28,051.41

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 19 September, 2017, 9:03am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 19 September, 2017, 6:17pm

Hong Kong stocks retreated on Tuesday from its highest level in 27 months, as insurers and brokerages shares dragged down the index amid a correction in mainland equity markets.

The Hang Seng Index closed down 0.4 per cent, or 108.36 points, at 28,051.41, after touching an intra-day high of 28,248.21, its highest since May, 26 2015. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index eased 0.6 per cent or 70.27 points to 11,125.71.

“A minor correction in A-shares today dragged Hong Kong’s market slightly lower on profit-taking,” Kenny Wen Kit, wealth management strategist at Sun Hung Kai Financial said. “But the benchmark index is still above the key 28,000 level, buoyed by positive sentiment especially in Chinese brokerages and the property sector.”

Chinese brokerages pulled back from yesterday’s advances which were triggered by mainland regulators’s decision to relax restrictions on index futures trading. Meanwhile Goldman Sachs said in a research report that brokers’ near-term profit growth will benefit if a proposed policy to halt a commission war in China were to be implemented.

Citic Securities eased 2.7 per cent to HK$17.8 after surging 8.5 per cent on Monday. Haitong Securities fell 2.1 per cent to HK$12.96 after Monday’s 4.3 per cent gain.

Ping An slipped 0.9 per cent to HK$62.3 and AIA fell 0.9 per cent to HK$59.8, taking 21 points from the Hang Seng Index.

Internet giant Tencent fell 0.5 per cent to HK$344.2 after hitting a intraday record high of 349.60.

China Overseas Land and Development was the biggest blue-chip underperformer, dropping 2.6 per cent to HK$28.45. Wharf Holdings declined 1.3 per cent to HK$71 and Cheung Kong Property fell 1 per cent to HK$67.1.

But Citigroup lifted target prices for Chinese developers amid the sector’s traditional peak season in September and October. Sunac continued to rise for a seventh straight day, surging 9.1 per cent to a record HK$37.6. Hopson Development Holdings surged 21 per cent to HK$9.64.

Geely Auto, however, rose 1.6 per cent to hit a fresh record high of HK$22.70 and was the second best performer among index components. The Chinese car maker said it expected alternative energy cars to account for 90 per cent of total sales by 2020.

On the Chinese mainland, the Shanghai Composite Index edged down 0.2 per cent to 3,356.85 and the large company tracking CSI300 was off 0.3 per cent to 3,832.12.

The Shenzhen Composite declined 0.4 per cent at 1,995.60 and the Nasdaq-style ChiNext slipped 0.8 per cent to 1,880.30.