Shanghai stocks end higher as cenbank vows further policy support; Hong Kong falls
** The Hang Seng index fell 0.4% to 20,793.40, while the China Enterprises Index lost 0.3% to 7,117.75. ** Both official and private surveys showed China's services and factory activities contracted at a steeper pace in April amid escalating COVID-19 lockdowns, raising fears of a sharp economic slowdown in the second quarter that will weigh on global growth.
Shanghai shares ended higher in a holiday-shortened week on Thursday, led by consumer stocks, after the central bank pledged support to ensure ample liquidity, though surveys showing a dip in China's economic activity weighed on sentiment.
** The Shanghai Composite Index closed 0.7% higher at 3,067.76, while the blue-chip CSI300 index fell 0.2% to 4,010.21. ** The Hang Seng index fell 0.4% to 20,793.40, while the China Enterprises Index lost 0.3% to 7,117.75.
** Both official and private surveys showed China's services and factory activities contracted at a steeper pace in April amid escalating COVID-19 lockdowns, raising fears of a sharp economic slowdown in the second quarter that will weigh on global growth. ** On Wednesday, China's central bank pledged monetary policy support to help businesses badly hit by the latest COVID-19 outbreak in the country, and support a recovery in consumption.
** Consumer staples edged up 0.2%, and consumer discretionary added 2.4%, while automobiles and healthcare firms each went up 3.5%. ** Beijing shut scores of metro stations and bus routes and extended curbs on many public venues, focusing efforts to avoid the fate of Shanghai, where millions have been under strict lockdown for more than a month.
** "We still believe markets should remain focused on the development of the pandemic and the corresponding zero-COVID strategy," said Nomura in a note. ** Tourism stocks fell 0.5% after government data showed Chinese travelers spent 43% less over the five-day Labour Day holiday than a year earlier.
** Real estate developers lost more than 2%, dismissing vows to support the property market and provide reasonable financing needs to developers by the central bank, the securities regulator, the banking and insurance regulator, and the Shenzhen Stock Exchange. ** The CSI Computer Index dropped 1.5%, led by a 10% slump in Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co, following the Financial Times report that the United States is moving towards imposing new sanctions on the Chinese video surveillance company.
** CATL plunged more than 8% after the world's largest electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturer reported a 23.6% drop in first-quarter profit. ** Tech names listed in Hong Kong ended 0.1% lower after jumping as much as 2.8% in early trade, as the U.S. central bank raised interest rates by 50 basis points but sounded a less hawkish tone than some had feared.
** Tech investors traded cautiously ahead of a possible meeting between tech giants and China's leaders on Friday, which could signal an end to a long crackdown on the internet sector. ** Wuxi Biologics tumbled 5.4% to become the biggest decliner in the Hang Seng Index and the biggest drag of the benchmark.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)