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Hong Kong stocks rise on US surge, higher Shanghai inflows; China dips
February 22, 2017 / 5:17 AM / 9 months ago

Hong Kong stocks rise on US surge, higher Shanghai inflows; China dips

* SSEC -0.2 pct, CSI300 -0.2 pct, HSI +0.8 pct

* Investors unfazed as China home price growth cools for 4th month

* Kweichow Moutai reaches record high after Q1 profit forecast

SHANGHAI, Feb 22 (Reuters) - Hong Kong stocks on Wednesday morning erased the previous day’s loss, helped by record-setting U.S. markets overnight and stronger inflows from the mainland.

China’s main stock indexes edged lower.

The Hang Seng index was up 0.8 percent to 24,161.21 at midday while the Hong Kong China Enterprises Index gained 1.2 percent, to 10,532.98.

Investors were unfazed by official data showing that China’s home price growth slowed for the fourth straight month in January as demand cooled further in the biggest cities.

A gauge of mainland property developers listed in Hong Kong rallied 3.2 percent, hitting a nearly five-month high.

Linus Yip, strategist at First Shanghai Securities Ltd, said optimism toward real estate plays was lifted as progress in containing home prices might make regulators refrain from taking more tightening moves in the property market.

He said the resources sector was bullish as investors awaited China’s annual parliament next month for clues about supply-side reforms, which could further lift prices of raw materials.

Resource stocks added 2.2 percent at midday.

Southbound inflows through the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect reached 20 percent of the daily quota by the lunch break, surpassing Tuesday’s total usage of 9.8 percent.

“But the market would under profit-taking pressure, if rising share prices were not justified, as earnings season has kicked off,” Yip said.

On the mainland, both the CSI300 index and the Shanghai Composite Index shed 0.2 percent, to 3,477.42 and 3,248.35, respectively.

Shares of Kweichow Moutai Co Ltd climbed to a record high in early trading after the liquor maker said it expected net first-quarter profit to rise 15.9 percent from the previous year, to 5.7 billion yuan ($828.6 million).

That helped an index tracking the liquor industry gain 1.1 percent and hit its highest level.

Media reports on signs of further mixed-ownership reforms in the liquor industry boosted related stocks. Shanxi Xinghuacun Fen Wine Factory Co Ltd has added 22 percent since Feb. 6. ($1 = 6.8790 Chinese yuan)

Reporting by Jackie Cai and John Ruwitch; Editing by Richard Borsuk

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