Hong Kong Stocks Swing Higher; Railroad Stocks Rally
Hong Kong stocks turned higher Thursday morning, reversing from opening losses as the Hang Seng Index edged up 0.2%. Hong Kong's mainland-China-tracking Hang Seng China Enterprises Index dipped 0.1%, but over on the mainland, the Shanghai Composite also recouped earlier losses to advance 0.6%. China's two largest high-speed-rail manufacturers -- CSR Corp. and China CNR Corp. -- added to their recent rally, jumping 3.5% and 3.3% respectively as investors looked ahead to the pair's official merger after securities regulators approved the plan last week. The Shanghai-listed shares of the two companies were both suspended from trading after their stocks soared limit-up by more than 10%. Energy plays also climbed across the board after international crude prices rallied overnight. Cnooc Ltd. advanced 3.6%, China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. (Sinopec) rose 2.5%, Kunlun Energy Co. added 2.4%, and PetroChina Co. moved up 1.6%. China Oilfield Services Ltd. also snagged a 4.3% gain. However, telecoms operators fell broadly, with index heavyweight China Mobile Ltd. dropping 0.3%, after Chinese Premier Li Keqiang urged related government departments to work together and study plans to cut mobile-data charges for China's consumers. The remarks were followed by a Weibo (microblog) post on the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology's official account saying the ministry would push companies to increase investments in network construction and lower the data fees. Fellow wireless majors deepened their losses on the news, with China Unicom Hong Kong Ltd. down 1.3%, and China Telecom Corp. lower by 1.1%.
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