Hong Kong shares lower on Wall St fall but off lows

Share prices were lower after Wall Street's decline, but off their lows with H-shares outperforming, amid general investor caution towards the weekend, dealers said.

Share prices were lower after Wall Street's decline, but off their lows with H-shares outperforming, amid general investor caution towards the weekend, dealers said.

They said H-shares fared slightly better than the broader market on reports that the China Securities Regulatory Commission will call a suspension to additional A-share offers.

At 11.08 am, the Hang Seng index was down 72.49 points or 0.64% at 11,316.84, off a high of 11,325.54 and a low of 11,254.56, on turnover of 2.505 billion hkd.

The Hang Seng June contract was at 11,333 points.

The China Enterprises index was up 16.10 points at 2,209.59 and the CAC index down 11.72 points at 1,278.83.

The GEM index was up 0.30 points at 199.14 on turnover of 46.276 million hkd.

The Tracker Fund was down 0.05 at 11.40.

Y K Chan, an analyst with CEF Brokerage, said the Hang Seng Index dropped 100 points at the opening, but was able to find strong support at around 11,300 points.

"In general, investors were adopting a wait and see approach to the market, the fall on Wall Street was due to some internal factors, which were unrelated to the local bourse, the decline was limited this morning," he said.

He said market caution also intensified with key games approaching in the World Cup, with distracted investors expected to largely stay away from the market.

Telecom stocks were lower after the decline in their US and European counterparts, dealers said.

China Mobile was down 0.35 hkd at 24.60, China Unicom down 0.05 at 7.15, Hutchison Whampoa down 0.25 at 65.25 and PCCW down 0.02 at 1.91.

Cheung Kong was up 0.25 hkd at 72.25 after news that its shareholders will be entitled to unit CK Life Sciences International (Holdings) Inc's shares on the basis of one new CK Life Science share for every 25 Cheung Kong shares held.

Elsewhere, Sun Hung Kai Properties was down 0.25 at 62.75, New World Development lost 0.05 to 6.50, and Henderson Land dropped 0.20 to 34.00.

In the financial sector, HSBC was down 0.50 at 95.00, while Hang Seng Bank lost 0.50 to 87.25 and Bank of East Asia gained 0.05 to 16.85.

H shares outperformed after reports that the CSRC will call a suspension to additional A-share offers, with investors also attracted to their relatively low valuations, dealers said.

Shanghai Petrochemical was up 0.03 at 1.21, Huaneng Power gained 0.20 to 6.80 and Shenzheng Expressway was up 0.03 at 1.85.

Among red chips, Legend was down 0.025 at 3.20, China Resources was down 0.10 at 9.30 and Shanghai Industrial lost 0.10 to 15.85.

On the GEM board, tom.com lost 0.025 to 3.85, SUNeVision gained 0.01 to 1.62 and hongkong.com fell 0.005 to 0.285.

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