After sharp gains the previous day, Hong Kong and Shanghai markets extended their advance early Friday, with the Hang Seng Index up 1.2%, and the Shanghai Composite climbing 2.1%, after the two benchmarks rose 1.7% and 4.3%, respectively, on Thursday. In Hong Kong, the heavily weighted real-estate and banking sectors enjoyed a broad advance, with China Vanke Co. up 1.3%, Cheung Kong Holdings Ltd. up 2.2%, China Construction Bank Corp. up 3.5%, and Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd. up 3.2%, though HSBC Holdings PLC edged just 0.3% higher after a 0.8% loss overnight for its London-listed shares. Stock in Haitong Securities Co. soared more than 20% as they resumed trading after news the company was in talks with Portuguese bank Banco Espirito Santo to buy its investment-banking unit. In other deal news, shares of Citic Ltd. added 5% after a Wall Street Journal report that Japan's Itochu Corp. and Thailand's Charoen Pokphand Group were looking to buy a stake in the Chinese conglomerate. Energy shares diverged, meanwhile, with PetroChina Co. flat in Hong Kong but up 4.9% in Shanghai, while China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., or Sinopec, lost 0.6% in Hong Kong but rose 0.8% in Shanghai, with Caixin reporting that the head of Sinopec's oil-field-services unit was under investigation. Among other Hong Kong movers, Great Wall Motor Co. rallied 4.1% after the release of its November sales and output numbers, while rival Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd. was up 2.6%, and Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Ltd. added 2.8%.
Copyright © 2014 MarketWatch, Inc.