HONG KONG Jan 31 Hong Kong shares slipped from
a 21-month high on Thursday, trimming January's gains, as
investors turned cautious following a batch of profit warnings
and knocked the Hang Seng Index off its most overbought
levels in almost a month.
The Hang Seng Index closed down 0.4 percent on the
day, but up 4.7 percent on the month at 23,729.5. The China
Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong
Kong shed 0.3 percent on Thursday, but rose 6.1 percent in
The CSI300 of the top Shanghai and Shenzhen
A-share listings slipped 0.1 percent on the day, but climbed 6.5
percent on the month. The Shanghai Composite Index ended
up 0.1 percent on Thursday and 5.1 percent in January.
* January saw the Hang Seng Index rise for a fifth-straight
month, which equalled a monthly winning streak between March and
July in 2009 and is the longest since an eight-month string
between March and October 2007.
* The Chinese steel and shipping sectors dominated the more
than 10 profit warnings posted by Hong Kong-listed companies
overnight, sending those shares into a tailspin. Aggravating
jitters about steel, the China Iron and Steel Association (CISA)
said on Thursday that 2012 profit reported by its members, which
include more than 70 large steel mills, slumped 98 percent to
1.6 billion yuan ($257.2 million).
* Hengdeli, China's top luxury watch distributor,
reversed midday losses to end up 0.7 percent on Thursday after a
company statement reiterating no material changes in its
business operations. On Wednesday, the stock plunged 13 percent
following a report in Hong Kong-based Next magazine raising
questions about its operations.
* China's January official purchasing managers index (PMI)
at 0100 GMT on Friday is likely to show manufacturing activity
in the world's second-largest economy expanded at its fastest
pace in nine months. The median forecast of 14 economists polled
by Reuters showed China's official PMI is at 50.9 for January,
compared to December's 50.6.