* SSEC -0.3 pct, CSI300 -0.1 pct, HSI -0.2 pct
* China producer inflation cools for the first time in 7
* Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau concept takes baton from Xiongan
SHANGHAI, April 12 China and Hong Kong stocks
edged lower on Wednesday morning, with risk appetites curbed by
rising geopolitical tensions as well as softer China producer
inflation data that could spur worries on sustainability of the
country's economic recovery.
But market sentiment got some support from China's economic
integration plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Great Bay
Area, with shares of port operators and developers in the region
China's CSI300 index was down 0.1 percent, to
3,515.55 points, by the lunch break, while the Shanghai
Composite Index lost 0.3 percent, to 3,278.53 points.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index dropped 0.2
percent, to 24,046.47 points, and the Hong Kong China
Enterprises Index shed 0.5 percent, to 10,114.10.
Participants are closely watching developments in Syria
following the U.S. missile strike, and tensions in the Korean
On the economic front, data released on Wednesday showed
China's producer price index (PPI) rose just 0.3 percent in
March, cooling for the first time in seven months.
Annual consumer price inflation edged up to 0.9 percent, up
slightly from the previous month but well below the 1.7 percent
averaged during the first two months of the year.
But traders say any fears of renewed economic slowdown were
partly offset by newly-announced plans to build Xiongan Economic
Zone near Beijing, as well as the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau
Great Bay Area.
"Cooling inflation has been largely expected," Wu Kan, head
of equity trading at investment firm Shanshan Finance said,
citing the recent weakness in commodity prices in Shanghai.
"But thematic investments around those massive economic zone
plans will continue as such projects will boost demand for
building materials and contribute to economic growth."
Guangdong-based developers and port operators, including
Shenzhen Yan Tian Port and Gree Real Estate
climbed on Wednesday, taking the baton from "Xiongan
Most listed Chinese lenders sagged after China's
banking regulator told lenders to conduct "self-inspections" in
areas such as using loopholes to circumvent rules, in order to
reduce leverage. The move will potentially hurt banks' balance
(Reporting by Samuel Shen and John Ruwitch; Editing by Richard