* HSI flat, H-shares -0.3 pct, CSI300 +0.1 pct
* China railway sector rises on state support
* China airlines fall after another profit warning
* Yili climbs 4.5 percent to nearly 2-month high
(Updates to midday)
By Grace Li
HONG KONG, July 21 China shares held a soft tone
on Monday, with investors preparing a sizable amount of money
for upcoming initial public offerings (IPOs), while Hong Kong
By midday, the Hang Seng Index was barely changed at
23,457.16 points. The China Enterprises Index of the top
Chinese listings in Hong Kong fell 0.3 percent and appeared on
track for a fourth straight daily loss.
The CSI300 of the leading Shanghai and Shenzhen
A-share listings inched up 0.1 percent, while the Shanghai
Composite Index was off 0.2 percent at 2,055.45 points.
Both flitted between negative and positive territory.
Eleven of the 12 IPOs which were approved last week will
start taking subscriptions on Wednesday and Thursday, which is
expected to lock up hundreds of billions of yuan in funds.
But Du Changchun, an analyst at Northeastern Securities in
Shanghai, said the indexes would likely not experience large
declines as was seen in June, when the diversion of capital by
the first 10 IPOs after a four-month lull led to the indexes'
biggest daily losses in more than seven weeks.
"For institutional investors, the yields from the first
batch were not that good, with the winning rate low but costs
relatively high," said Du.
"The IPOs will draw more interest from retail investors. But
as they comprise the bulk of investors on the mainland, the
division in funds is still obvious," he added.
Railway-related sectors outperformed on optimism there would
be increased state spending. In Hong Kong, China Railway
Construction added 1.7 percent and train maker CSR
Corp 2.4 percent.
A China Business News report said on Monday several central
government agencies, including the top planning agency and the
finance ministry, have unveiled policies to ensure railway
investment in the second half.
China Eastern Airlines sank 1.3 percent after it
warned of a sharp profit decline in January-June from a year
earlier after the market close on Friday.
China Southern Airlines, which issued a similar
profit alert last week, shed 0.8 percent in Hong Kong.
Top index boost Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group
gained 4.5 percent to its highest since May 27.
Macau casino operators were broadly stronger, recovering
some losses from last week. Galaxy Entertainment Group
, Sands China and SJM Holdings all
rose 2.8 percent.
(Editing by Jacqueline Wong)