HONG KONG Dec 19 Hong Kong shares could test
August 2011 highs on Wednesday, buoyed by strong Wall Street
gains on elevated hopes of imminent progress on a deal that
would avoid painful cuts and tax hikes that could hurt the U.S.
China International Marine Containers (Group) Co Ltd
is expected to make its trading debut on Wednesday.
On Tuesday, the Hang Seng Index slipped 0.1 percent,
while the China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese
listings in Hong Kong edged up 0.1 percent.
Elsewhere in Asia, Japan's Nikkei was up 1.3
percent, while South Korea's KOSPI was up 0.5 percent at
FACTORS TO WATCH:
* Europe-focused retailer Esprit Holdings Ltd
warned on Tuesday it may post a loss for the six months ended
December due to worse-than-expected operating results, as it
grapples with weakening demand in the euro zone and faces an
uphill battle to revive its brand. [ID: nL4N09S32K]
* China Shenhua Energy Co Ltd recently
talked to Whitehaven Coal about taking an equity stake
in the Australian miner in return for some coal assets and was
told to come back with a full takeover offer, a newspaper
reported on Wednesday.
* The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) stepped into the
currency market late on Tuesday, selling HK$4.42 billion ($570
million) in Hong Kong dollars as the local currency
repeatedly hit the strong end of its permitted trading range.
* The United States on Tuesday pressed forward with plans to
slap punitive duties on wind turbine towers from China, keeping
up friction on the clean energy front as it welcomed a
high-level Chinese delegation for trade and economic talks.