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JD.com to spin off health unit, list in Hong Kong

FILE PHOTO: JD.com sign is seen at the World Internet Conference (WIC) in Wuzhen, Zhejiang province, China, October 20, 2019. REUTERS/Aly Song

(Reuters) - Chinese e-commerce retailer JD.com 9618.HK is planning to spin off its health unit and list it on the Hong Kong stock exchange, the New York-listed company said on Monday, a move that follows escalating Sino-U.S. political tensions.

Several Chinese companies are putting off plans for U.S. listings amid mounting tensions between the world’s top two economies, while those listed in New York are seeking to return to exchanges closer to home.

JD.com, which is listed on the Nasdaq in New York, raised about $3.87 billion in its Hong Kong secondary listing earlier this year.

Its U.S.-listed shares fell nearly 2% in premarket trading following Monday’s announcement.

JD.com said the timing of divestiture and unit listing will depend on market conditions, and there is no assurance as to whether the process will be completed.

Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd 0388.HK said last month a trend of secondary listings by New York-listed Chinese companies would bolster its prospects.

E-commerce giant Alibaba BABA.N completed its secondary listing in Hong Kong last year. Other companies including travel firm Ctrip TCOM.O and Baidu BIDU.O were considering Hong Kong listings, Reuters reported earlier this year.

Reporting by Munsif Vengattil in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri, Anil D’Silva and Shinjini Ganguli

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