October 31, 2018 / 8:51 AM / 19 days ago

HK shares end higher, but post sixth straight month of losses

* Hang Seng index ends up 1.6 pct; down 10.1 pct for month

* Longest monthly losing streak for HSI since 1982

* China Enterprises index HSCE rises 1.4 percent

Oct 31 (Reuters) - Shares in Hong Kong ended higher on Wednesday, but finished the month over 10 percent weaker as concerns over China growth and Sino-U.S. trade friction weighed heavily on investors’ minds. ** At the close, the Hang Seng index was up 1.6 percent at 24,979.69 points, while the China Enterprises Index closed 1.4 percent higher at 10,138.63 points. ** Despite Wednesday’s gains, the Hang Seng finished down 10.1 percent for the month, its worst monthly performance since January 2016. It was the sixth consecutive monthly drop for the index. The Hang Seng has only dropped for six straight months once before, in 1982. ** The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares ended 0.3 percent higher, while the IT sector closed 4.99 percent firmer, the financial sector ended up 1.26 percent and property sector closed 0.32 percent lower. ** The top gainer on the Hang Seng was Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd, up 7.6 percent, while the biggest loser was Link Real Estate Investment Trust, which closed down 3.61 percent. ** The Shanghai Composite index closed 1.4 percent higher at 2,602.78 points. The index dropped 7.7 percent for the month, its biggest monthly drop since June. The blue-chip CSI300 index ended 1.4 higher, but dropped 8.3 percent for the month, its worst monthly performance since January 2016. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index closed 1.32 percent firmer, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed up 2.16 percent. ** The yuan was quoted at 6.9728 per U.S. dollar at 0823 GMT, 0.08 percent weaker than the previous close of 6.9675. It touched 6.9747 to the dollar on Wednesday, its weakest level since May 2008. ** The top gainers among H-shares were Air China Ltd up 6.95 percent, followed by Anhui Conch Cement Co Ltd , gaining 6.16 percent and Tencent Holdings Ltd , up by 5.87 percent. ** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were PICC Property and Casualty Co Ltd, which ended down 12.14 percent, People’s Insurance Group of China Co Ltd, which closed 6.4 percent weaker and China Petroleum & Chemical Corp, which ended 2.7 percent down. ** About 2.44 billion Hang Seng index shares were traded, roughly 136.8 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 2.17 billion. ** At close, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 23.59 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. ** The price-to-earnings ratio of the Hang Seng index was 9.55, as of the last full trading day, while the dividend yield was 3.9 percent. ** So far this week, the market capitalisation of the Hang Seng index dropped 0.83 percent to HK$15.87 trillion. ** The short and one-factor leveraged Hang Seng index, which is designed to replicate the payoff of a short or leveraged portfolio, and is linked to the movements of the Hang Seng Index, was lower by 1.6 percent on the day at 5,579.85 points. (Reporting by Andrew Galbraith, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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