Bloomberg News

Hong Kong Stocks Drop for Fourth Day as Local Developers Slide

March 13, 2013

Hong Kong stocks fell for a fourth day, led by local developers after HSBC Holdings Plc and Standard Chartered Plc raised mortgage rates in the city.

Sun Hung Kai Properties Ltd. (16), Hong Kong’s biggest developer, slid 3.4 percent. Chinese developers also dropped, extending yesterday’s declines after the China Securities Journal reported Beijing will strengthen a review of homebuyer qualifications. ASM Pacific Technology Ltd. (522), a maker of assembly and packaging equipment for the semiconductor industry, declined 5.5 percent after its controlling shareholder cut its stake in the company.

The Hang Seng Index retreated 0.7 percent to 22,392.54 as of 10:33 a.m. in Hong Kong. All but six stocks fell in the 50- member gauge. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland companies sank 0.8 percent to 10,950.36.

“In the short term, the market is still under pressure but right now it’s going into a longer term support level zone,” said Linus Yip, a Hong Kong-based strategist at First Shanghai Securities Ltd. “We expect there may be some bottom fishing and bargain hunting coming out.” Property shares are dragging the market down as they react to the news on mortgage rates, Yip said.

The Hang Seng Index (HSI) lost this year’s gains yesterday as Chinese developers tumbled amid concern the government is intensifying efforts to curb property prices, and as data from the nation indicated slower growth in the world’s second-largest economy. The benchmark traded at 10.9 times average estimated earnings on yesterday, compared with 14.1 for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index and 12.7 for the Stoxx Europe 600 Index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Hang Seng Index futures slid 0.6 percent to 22,319. The HSI Volatility Index (VHSI) increased 0.6 percent to 15.78, indicating traders expect a swing of 4.5 percent for the equity benchmark in the next 30 days.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kana Nishizawa in Hong Kong at knishizawa5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Gentle at ngentle2@bloomberg.net


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