Hong Kong shares end up 1.09 per cent

AFP

HONG KONG - Hong Kong shares closed 1.09 per cent higher on Wednesday, in line with a broad regional uptick after Wall Street ended a three-day losing streak.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index rose 246.20 points to 22,843.17 on turnover of HK$70.97 billion (S$11.4 billion).

Eyes are now on the release Thursday and Friday of Chinese data, including on trade and inflation, hoping for a pick-up in the world's number two economy.

Regional shares mostly rose after Wall Street's three main indexes rebounded from three straight losses that were fuelled by fears big-name tech firms such as Facebook, Google and Tesla were overpriced.

The tech-rich Nasdaq - which has lost more than five per cent since the start of March - rose 0.81 per cent, the Dow edged up 0.06 per cent and the S&P 500 gained 0.38 per cent.

In Hong Kong shares, Internet giant Tencent climbed 2.75 per cent to HK$523.5, China Mobile added 1.24 per cent to HK$73.7 and Bank of China gained 1.15 per cent to HK$3.52.

Macau casino operator Sands China added 3.4 per cent to HK$60.90 and banking giant ICBC gained 0.61 per cent to HK$4.93.

"Across Asia we're looking at green shoots everywhere," Desmond Chua, market analyst at CMC Markets in Singapore, told Dow Jones Newswires, citing improved sentiment from the US and investors looking ahead to the release of minutes from the Federal Open Markets Committee.

In China the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.33 per cent, or 6.96 points, to 2,105.24 - its highest in six weeks - on turnover of 87.4 billion yuan (S$17.6 billion).

The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China's second exchange, gained 0.90 per cent or 9.69 points to 1,087.89 on turnover of 100.9 billion yuan.

Analysts expect the market to consolidate owing to economic worries despite Beijing's mini stimulus last week.

"The market may lack strong upward momentum in the absence of signals of a turnaround in economic growth and corporates' earnings," Zhang Gang, an analyst with Central China Securities, told Dow Jones Newswires.

Among the most actively traded, Shenzhen-listed Wasu Media Holdings soared by its 10 per cent daily limit to 28.09 yuan after announcing late Wednesday that Alibaba founder Jack Ma and his partners will take a 20 per cent stake.

Other media firms also rose with Beijing Gehua CATV Network surging 7.54 per cent to 9.13 yuan and Zhejiang Daily Media Group gaining 3.87 per cent to 30.34 yuan.

Financial stocks fell on profit-taking. Haitong Securities dropped 1.12 per cent to 9.70 yuan while China Minsheng Banking fell 1.11 per cent to 8.05 yuan.

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