May 30, 2018 / 4:21 AM / 3 months ago

China, Hong Kong stocks fall on Italian crisis, trade war fears

* SSEC -1.8 pct, CSI300 -1.5 pct, HSI -1.4 pct

* HK->Shanghai Connect daily quota used -1.4 pct, Shanghai->HK daily quota used 0 pct

* FTSE China A50 -1.5 pct, BNY Mellon ADR China Select Index -0.2 pct

SHANGHAI, May 30 (Reuters) - China and Hong Kong stocks fell on Wednesday, tracking a global selloff as Italy’s political crisis knocked investor sentiment, and as trade war fears resurfaced after the United States said it would continue trade actions against China. ** The CSI300 index was down 1.5 percent at 3,745.62 points at the end of the morning session, while the Shanghai Composite Index lost 1.8 percent to 3,065.08 points. ** The Hang Seng index dropped 1.4 percent to 30,054.47 points, while the Hong Kong China Enterprises Index lost 1.7 percent to 11,753.51 points. ** Investors fear that repeat elections in the euro zone’s third-largest economy - which could come as soon as July - may become a de-facto referendum on Italian membership of the currency bloc and the country’s role in the European Union. ** Adding to pressure were worries over trade tensions between China and the United States. ** The United States said on Tuesday that it would continue pursuing actions on trade with China, days after Washington and Beijing announced a tentative solution to their dispute and suggested that tensions had cooled. ** China’s state media on Wednesday lashed into a U.S. announcement that it would press ahead with restrictions on investment by Chinese companies, saying Beijing was ready to fight back if Washington was looking to ignite a trade war. ** “The U.S. persistence in pursuing trade actions against China is quite surprising after the two countries issued a joint statement (regarding trade consultations),” CITIC Securities wrote in a report. ** The short-term uncertainties would rise and sentiment in the A-share market could be curbed, the brokerage added. ** Noting the continued weakness in China’s banking shares, the brokerage said that to some extent reflected investors’ pessimistic expectations about the quality of those lenders’ assets amid credit risks in a wave of bond defaults. ** An index tracking major lenders on the mainland fell 1.4 percent by the lunch break to a 10-month low, and looked set for a seventh straight session of losses. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was weaker by 1.34 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index was down 1.52 percent . ** The yuan was quoted at 6.4264 per U.S. dollar, 0.18 percent weaker than the previous close of 6.415. ** The largest percentage gainers on the main Shanghai Composite index were Xinjiang Sayram Modern Agriculture Co Ltd up 10.08 percent, followed by BanBao Co Ltd gaining 10.01 percent and Great-Sun Foods Co Ltd up by 10 percent. ** The largest percentage losers on the Shanghai index were Junhe Pumps Holding Co Ltd down 10 percent, followed by Hubei Mailyard Share Co Ltd losing 10 percent and Changchun Sinoenergy Corp down by 9.96 percent. ** The top gainers among H-shares were CSPC Pharmaceutical Group Ltd up 0.81 percent, followed by CNOOC Ltd gaining 0.78 percent and China Petroleum & Chemical Corp up by -0.14 percent. ** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were China Vanke Co Ltd which has fallen 3.35 percent, Byd Co Ltd which has lost 2.8 percent and Huaneng Power International Inc down by 2.5 percent. ** As of 04:01 GMT, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 20.27 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares.

Reporting by Luoyan Liu and John Ruwitch; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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