Hong Kong shares close slightly up on blue-chip gains

BEIJING, April 14 Mon Apr 14, 2014 4:23am EDT

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BEIJING, April 14 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares finished slightly higher on Monday in subdued trade, with a strong performance from blue chips including Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd pulling up the index.

The Hang Seng Index closed up 0.2 percent at 23,038.8. The China Enterprises Index of the leading offshore Chinese listings in Hong Kong was also up 0.2 percent.

Securities firms fell as investors took profits after last week's gains following an announcement on cross-border investment rules as investors awaited further details about how the policy would be implemented.

Haitong Securities Co Ltd dropped 2.7 percent while CITIC Securities Co Ltd shed 2.4 percent.

Last week's jump came on the news that the Hong Kong and China securities regulators had reached an agreement to allow investors in their respective regions to trade shares in each other's markets

But shares in the Hong Kong stock exchange itself continued to perform well, gaining 2.6 percent on the day to close up at its highest level since January 2013.

Shares in Chinese snack maker Want Want China holdings Ltd also registered strong gains, increasing 5.2 percent on the day, as cheap input prices and strong projections for consumption growth by analysts pushed the stock to its highest ever level.

Shares in MMG Ltd surged 8.8 percent, pushing the stock to its highest intraday level since early December, after a consortium led by the company purchased an interest in the Las Bambas copper mine in Peru from Glencore Xstrata in a $6 billion cash deal. (Reporting By Natalie Thomas; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)

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