HONG KONG Jan 17 Hong Kong shares slipped to a
third-straight loss on Thursday as investors took profits on
growth-sensitive counters ahead of a slew of Chinese economic
data due on Friday.
The Hang Seng Index closed down 0.1 percent at
23,339.8 points, sinking further from Monday's 19-1/2-month
closing high. The China Enterprises Index of the top
Chinese listings in Hong Kong ended down 0.4 percent.
The CSI300 of the top Shanghai and Shenzhen
listings closed down 0.9 percent, while the Shanghai Composite
Index shed 1.1 percent. Losses over the last two days
have about halved gains made earlier this week.
* Evergrande tumbled 7.1 percent to HK$4.32,
slightly below the HK$4.35 level at which the Chinese developer
priced one billion new shares on Thursday, which was a 6.5
percent discount to its Wednesday's close.
* Hong Kong property stocks rose after no harsh property
curbs were included in the maiden policy speech by the
territory's new chief executive on Wednesday, who instead
announced an increase in land supply.
* The Hang Seng Index finished negative on the day after
earlier testing chart resistance at 19-1/2 month highs at about
23,500. This level has stymied index gains for more than two
weeks. Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) tracking both onshore and
offshore China listings were among the most shorted, suggesting
some investors are betting on more index losses after a strong
start to the year.
* Data due on Friday is expected to show that China's annual
economic growth quickened to 7.8 percent in the fourth quarter
of 2012 from 7.4 percent in the third quarter. December data for
housing prices, urban investment, industrial output and retail
sales are also expected.