Hong Kong shares set for weak open after 3 weeks of gains

HONG KONG, Sept 24 Sun Sep 23, 2012 8:54pm EDT

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HONG KONG, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares were expected to open flat to slightly weaker on Monday after three straight weeks of gains as investors lock in some profits ahead of the quarter-end and on concerns over how long China's economic slowdown will persist.

The Hang Seng index has risen for three straight weeks helped by commodities-related sectors. The index closed up 0.7 percent on Friday.

However Chinese shares on the mainland slumped to their worst week in 11 months last week on dwindling expectations that the authorities will further ease policy, particularly for the real estate sector.

STOCKS TO WATCH:

* China's ambassador to Canada warned in remarks published on Saturday against letting domestic politics drive the Canadian government's decision on whether to approve a Chinese state-owned oil company CNOOC Ltd's proposed $15.1 billion takeover of Calgary-based Nexen Inc.

* Standard Chartered Bank signed a final agreement with New York's banking regulator to pay $340 million to settle allegations that it hid transactions with Iran from regulators.

* Airlines from China and Japan have cut or delayed flights between the two countries as tensions mount between the region's two largest economies over a territorial dispute. China Eastern Airlines said it would delay the launch of a new route between Shanghai and Sendai.

(Reporting by Vikram Subhedar and Donny Kwok; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

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