Hong Kong shares may extend losing streak into 6th day

HONG KONG, April 19 Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:14pm EDT

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HONG KONG, April 19 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares could extend a losing streak into a sixth day on Friday, after more soft U.S. economic data and corporate earnings further undermined sentiment and dented U.S. stocks.

The Hang Seng Index closed down 0.3 percent at 21,512.5 on Thursday in its fifth-straight daily loss. The benchmark barely closed above its 200-day moving average at 21,488.2 and is now down 2.6 percent for the week.

The China Enterprises Index of the leading Chinese listings in Hong Kong also shed 0.3 percent on Thursday and is now down 3.7 percent for the week.

Elsewhere in Asia, Japan's Nikkei was down 0.2 percent, while South Korea's KOSPI was down 0.6 percent at 0102 GMT.

U.S. Stocks fell on Thursday and the S&P 500 closed below a key technical level after disappointing forecasts from eBay and other companies, casting doubt on the market's recent strength. More soft data added to the bearish sentiment, providing further evidence the recovery in the world's largest economy was losing steam.

FACTORS TO WATCH:

* IBM Corp is in negotiations to sell its x86 server hardware business to Chinese computer maker Lenovo Group , technology news site CRN reported on Thursday citing sources with knowledge of the situation.

* BYD Co , one of the better known Chinese brands thanks to a stake held by billionaire U.S. investor Warren Buffett, may stop making conventional gasoline-fuelled cars within two years and focus on 'new energy' battery models as part of a "re-birth plan" to arrest a slump in sales.

* The world's largest primary aluminium producer, UC RUSAL expects to receive $500 million in 2012 dividends from Russia's Norilsk Nickel, RUSAL's deputy chief executive said on Thursday.

* ZTE Corp , China's second-largest telecoms equipment maker, has essentially stopped doing business in Iran after a U.S. investigation into alleged sales of embargoed equipment, the company's chairman told Reuters on Thursday.

* China Mobile, the world's largest mobile operator, said on Thursday it had terminated an agreement to buy 12 percent of Taiwan mobile carrier Far EasTone, after it failed to overcome regulatory hurdles.

* Chinese sportswear group Li Ning Co Ltd said on Thursday it has appointed a former executive of Guess Inc GES.N and Levi Strauss Company LEVST.UL as its chief financial officer.

* Intime Department Store (Group) Co Ltd said it was not in the process of negotiating with Dalian Wanda Group for disposal of any assets and its controlling shareholder has no plan or intention to dispose of its company interests to Wanda.

* China Gas Holdings Ltd said it has appointed Liu Ming Hui as executive chairman of the board with immediate effect to represent the company for external affairs in order to improve the efficiency of daily business operation and ensure high standard of corporate governance.(Reporting by Clement Tan and Donny Kwok; Editing by Shri Navaratnam)

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