* SSEC -0.3 pct, CSI300 -0.3 pct, HSI -0.1 pct
* Fall of reserves to below $3 trln dents sentiment
* Uncertainties on Trump policies remain a concern
SHANGHAI, Feb 8 China stocks edged lower on
Wednesday, after foreign exchange reserves fell below a
psychological level, weighing on already fragile investor
sentiment amid tightening signals from the central bank.
Bearish inclinations spilled over to Hong Kong, where
capital outflow concerns resurfaced following recent gains by
the U.S. dollar, which make emerging markets less attractive.
On the mainland, both the CSI300 index and the
Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.3 percent, to 3,354.59
points and 3,142.93 points respectively.
China's foreign exchange reserves unexpectedly fell below
the closely watched $3 trillion level in January for the first
time in nearly six years. Still, the monthly drop was the
smallest pace in seven months due to Beijing's tighter capital
State media said China's financial markets shouldn't be too
sensitive to changes in the size of foreign exchange reserves,
as that is unnecessary.
Still, the decline in foreign reserves is denting market
sentiment, although the negative impact is limited, according to
Tian Weidong, analyst at Kaiyuan Securities in Xi'an.
He said investors were also concerned about U.S. President
Donald Trump's hawkish stance towards China.
"They are worrying about uncertainties in the world,
worrying about Trump and also concerned if there's going to be a
trade war," Tian said.
On mainland markets on Wednesday, energy stocks suffered the
most in a board-based retreat, with an index tracking the sector
down 0.8 percent at the lunch break, as oil prices
extended losses after the United States reported growing
Bucking the broad trend was defence stocks,
which added 1.2 percent on restructuring hopes.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index slipped 0.1
percent, to 23,310.29 points, while the Hong Kong China
Enterprises Index was barely changed, at 9,843.56
The dollar index hold ground in early trading after
hitting a one-week high in the previous session.
Most sectors in Hong Kong lost ground by the lunch break,
while a measure of property developers gained 1.5
percent as investors piled into real estate plays.
Index heavyweight China Overseas Land & Investment Ltd
jumped 5 percent at midday.
(Reporting by Jackie Cai and John Ruwitch; Editing by Richard