March 13, 2019 / 8:50 AM / 2 months ago

Hong Kong stocks fall as investors await Brexit vote, trade deal

* HSI down 0.4 pct, HSCE 0.5 pct lower

* Sunny Optical top gainer on Hang Seng

* Hengan International biggest loser

March 13 (Reuters) - Hong Kong stocks dropped on Wednesday, as investors turned cautious ahead of yet another make-or-break parliamentary vote on Brexit while awaiting more news on the progress of Sino-U.S. trade negotiations. ** The Hang Seng index fell 0.4 percent, to 28,807.45, while the China Enterprises Index lost 0.5 percent, to 11,405.82 points. ** Risk appetite had soured after British lawmakers crushed Prime Minister Theresa May’s European Union divorce deal, forcing parliament to decide within days whether to back a no-deal Brexit or seek a last-minute delay. ** Investors were also waiting for developments on the Sino-U.S. trade talks. ** The United States and China may be in the final weeks of discussions to hammer out a deal to ease their tit-for-tat tariffs dispute, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said on Tuesday. ** The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares dipped 0.4 percent, while the IT sector dipped 1.21 percent, the financial sector ended 0.2 percent lower and the property sector dipped 0.26 percent. ** The top gainer on the Hang Seng was Sunny Optical Technology Group Co Ltd, which gained 1.89 percent, while the biggest loser was Hengan International Group Company Ltd , which fell 4.53 percent. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was weaker by 0.29 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed down 0.99 percent. ** The yuan was quoted at 6.7092 per U.S. dollar at 08:33 GMT, 0.01 percent firmer than the previous close of 6.7098. ** The top gainers among H-shares were PICC Property and Casualty Co Ltd, up 1.76 percent, followed by Ping An Insurance Group Co of China Ltd, gaining 1.57 percent, and China Tower Corp Ltd, up by 1.08 percent. ** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were Hengan International Group Company Ltd, which was down 4.53 percent, SINOPHARM GROUP CO LTD, which fell 3.6 percent, and Guangzhou Automobile Group Co Ltd, down by 3.5 percent. ** About 1.22 billion Hang Seng index shares were traded, roughly 68.4 percent of the market’s 30-day moving average of 1.78 billion shares a day. The volume traded in the previous trading session was 1.92 billion. (Reporting by the Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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