Hong Kong Stocks Edge Lower As Energy Shares Weaken

MarketWatch Pulse

Hong Kong stocks edged lower Wednesday morning, with the Hang Seng Index down 0.3%, though the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index, or the H-shares index , inched 0.1% higher. Energy stocks suffered broad-based declines after international crude-oil futures dropped sharply: Cnooc Ltd. fell 1.3%, Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical Co. lost 1.2%, Kunlun Energy Co. sagged 1.1%, PetroChina Co. dropped 0.7%, and China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., or Sinopec, shed 0.4%. However, airlines advanced across the broad in anticipation of lower fuel costs, as China Southern Airlines Co. jumped 3.2%, China Eastern Airlines Corp. climbd 2.2%, Air China Ltd. gained 1.3%, and Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. added 0.6%. Major Chinese banks also rose, with China Merchants Bank Co. leading gains with a 2% advance. Among other market movers, online major Tencent Holdings Ltd. pulled back by 0.6%, and telecoms giant China Mobile Ltd. gave up 0.3%. New China Life Insurance Co. declined 2% after reports said some institutional investors had sold more than 30 million shares of the company for $221 million. On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite Index extended its gains, rising 0.6% after rallying 3.1% a day earlier.

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