PRESS DIGEST - Hong Kong - Oct 15

HONG KONG Mon Oct 14, 2013 10:16pm EDT

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HONG KONG Oct 15 (Reuters) - These are some of the leading stories in Hong Kong newspapers on Tuesday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

-- Measures to cool the housing market could result in a serious deficit for the government in the next financial year by slashing one of its main income sources - stamp duty on property sales - a university economist says. Ho Lok-sang said there has been a dramatic drop in transactions since the introduction of a special stamp duty and a 15 per cent duty on overseas and corporate buyers on top of the stamp duty. ()

-- Hong Kong watchdogs would be able to cope with "very bad" scenarios involving a sudden shock to the city's economy if the debt-ceiling crisis in the United States is not resolved, the territory's financial secretary John Tsang Chun-wah said. ()

-- Rental growth of Swire Properties' mainland portfolio will remain strong on the back of consumer appetite despite a slowing economy, said its mainland chief executive Guy Bradley, noting that the Hong Kong-based commercial landlord is seeking to add more new projects. ()

THE STANDARD

-- Hong Kong food prices are expected to soar sharply as prices in the mainland surged 6.1 percent last month, driving overall inflation to a seven-month high. The price rises were mainly due to seasonal demand ahead of the Mid-Autumn Festival, according to the mainland's statistics bureau. ()

-- Hong Kong Monetary Authority chief executive Norman Chan Tak-lam said there is neither the need nor the intention to change the current peg system as it is the most appropriate currency regime for the territory. ()

HONG KONG ECONOMIC JOURNAL

-- Chinese mobile handset maker ZTE will focus on developing its market in the United States in the future and sees sales contribution from the country to surpass China in 2015, according to a senior executive. ZTE's handset shipment volume was 10.1 million units for the second quarter of 2013, accounting for 4.2 percent of the world's total and was ranked the fifth largest.

HONG KONG ECONOMIC TIMES

-- A Shanghai-based online platform jointly established by Alibaba, Ping An Insurance and Tencent Holdings, for selling insurance products has received regulatory approval to commence business, according to a mainland media report.

For Chinese newspapers, see...............

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