HONG KONG, Feb 17 (Reuters) - These are some of the leading stories in Hong Kong newspapers on Monday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
-- Bank of East Asia kicks off the earnings season for Hong Kong banks on Tuesday, with exposure to the mainland and worsening credit quality in the country among key considerations for the sector. The market consensus is for the bank to report a net profit of HK$5.9 billion ($760.79 million) for last year, down 2.3 percent from 2012. (link.reuters.com/qep86v)
-- While a major gas discovery announced by PetroChina last week triggered a spike in its share price, analysts said any such news should be taken with a pinch of salt given the firm's tarnished track record in bringing previously announced major discoveries to production. (link.reuters.com/sep86v)
-- Scores of protesters marched through Tsim Sha Tsui in an "anti-locust" campaign demanding the Hong Kong government curb mainland visitors. (link.reuters.com/pep86v)
-- More secondary home sellers in Hong Kong offloaded their flats, offering discounts of up to HK$1 million ($128,900) as developers offered hefty discounts, boosting deals over the weekend to a near four-month high. (link.reuters.com/xep86v)
-- China CITIC Bank announced a better-than-expected annual net profit of 39 billion yuan ($6.43 billion) for last year, up more than 25 percent from the 31 billion yuan earned in 2012. (link.reuters.com/bup86v)
-- China Metal Resources Utilization has priced its shares at HK$1.13 each after the retail tranche was 16 times oversubscribed, market sources said. The copper recycler has raised about HK$700 million ($90.26 million) from 618.46 million shares in its float. (link.reuters.com/cup86v)
-- The international placing portion of the initial public offering of Chinese pork supplier Huisheng International Holdings Ltd in Hong Kong has been oversubscribed. Huisheng plans to raise up to HK$246 million ($31.72 million) through the IPO, with its trading debut scheduled on Feb. 28.
-- Hong Kong’s financial secretary, John Tsang, said ahead of his budget speech later this month that the city’s economy is still relied on its four pillar industries -- finance, trading and logistic, tourism, and professional services, but the growth is limited by labour and land supply.
-- Hong Kong cosmetic retailer Kawaiiland, which has prompted a price competition among its bigger rivals Sa Sa International and Bonjour Holdings, aims to capture local consumption by expanding its store network in major housing estates.
For Chinese newspapers, see............... ($1 = 7.7550 Hong Kong dollars) ($1 = 6.0668 Chinese yuan) (Reporting by Donny Kwok; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)