HONG KONG Dec 17 Hong Kong shares could start
the week higher on Monday after China pledged steady economic
polices in 2013, leaving room for manoeuvre in the face of
global risks while deepening reforms to support long-term
The official Xinhua news agency said Beijing would maintain
property controls, including restrictions on how many homes
individuals can buy, to ward off potential risks and will make
greater efforts to improve the quality of urbanisation to help
bolster domestic demand.
On Friday, the Hang Seng Index closed up 0.7 percent
at 22,606 points, its highest since Aug. 1, 2011. But stiff
chart resistance looms at around 22,800, shown by peaks in July
and August 2011.
Elsewhere in Asia, Japan's Nikkei was up 1.4
percent, while South Korea's KOSPI was down 0.2 percent
at 0051 GMT.
FACTORS TO WATCH:
* Li Ning Co Ltd, China's best-known sportswear
firm, warned on Monday it will post a substantial loss for 2012
as it plans to book a charge of up to $288 million to revamp its
* Trading in AIA Group shares was suspended on
Monday, the company said in an exchange filing. American
International Group said it has commenced a sale in Hong
Kong of up to all of its ordinary shares of AIA Group by means
of a placing to certain institutional investors.
* Chinese state-owned insurer PICC Group has
exercised the over-allotment option of its recent Hong Kong
share sale, lifting the total proceeds of the float to $3.6
* Hutchison Whampoa's managing director flew into
Vienna on Friday to fight for his company's 1.3 billion euro
($1.7 billion) takeover of Orange Austria, held up for
almost a year by regulatory wrangling.
* China's foreign exchange regulator has removed the $1
billion limit for foreign sovereign wealth funds, central banks
and monetary authorities buying Chinese assets through the
Qualified Institutional Investor Programme (QFII).
* China's securities regulator is discussing measures to
reduce the requirements needed for mainland Chinese firms to
list in Hong Kong, in part to relieve the pent-up demand for
domestic listings, the official China Securities Journal
reported on Monday quoting sources.
* China Machinery Engineering Corp (CMEC) has
priced its initial public offering in Hong Kong at the top end
of its marketed range, raising about $500 million, according to
a source with direct knowledge of the matter.
* The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) stepped into the
currency market on Friday, selling HK$3.1 billion ($400 million)
in Hong Kong dollars as the domestic currency repeatedly
hit the strong end of its trading range.
* Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd said its freight
traffic rose for the third consecutive month in November, up 6.3
percent year on year, driven by significant shipments of hi-tech
consumer products out of key manufacturing centres.