China Stocks Rise Further Ahead Of Legislative Meet

Hong Kong and Shanghai stocks rose Friday morning, with investors looking ahead to the annual sessions of China's two key legislative bodies next week, with analysts expecting Communist Party leaders to unveil key policies to support the economy. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index inched up 0.1% after gains the previous two days, and the Shanghai Composite Index advanced 0.4%, following a 2.2% rally on Thursday. Major Hong Kong property developer Cheung Kong Holdings Ltd. and sister conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa Ltd. -- both owned by local tycoon Li Ka-shing -- gained 1.4% each, after their 2014 net profit surged 53% and 116%, respectively. Cheung Kong's rival developers also traded mostly higher, with Sun Hung Kai Properties Ltd. up 1%, and New World Development Co. inching up 0.1%, ahead of their earnings due later in the day. Several Macau casino shares rebounded from losses a day before, as Sands China Ltd. climbed 2.3%, Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd. improved by 2.1%, MGM China Holdings Ltd. rose 1.5%, and SJM Holdings Ltd. added 0.5%. Chinese rail-construction firms were mixed following a broad rally Thursday triggered by reports that China might officially announce a "one belt, one road" strategy at next week's legislative sessions. The strategy aims to create a "new Silk Road" and boost economic coopoperation between China and other economies in Asia and Europe. China Railway Group Ltd. tacked on 0.8%, and China Railway Construction Corp. nudged 0.1% higher, but China Communications Construction Co. fell 0.3%.

Copyright © 2015 MarketWatch, Inc.