Hong Kong shares fall most in nearly six weeks as Sino-U.S. tensions weigh

* HK->Shanghai Connect daily quota used -1.6%, Shanghai->HK daily quota used 2.9%

* HSI -2.3%, HSCE -1.9%, CSI300 +0.5%

* FTSE China A50 +0.4%

July 22 (Reuters) – Hong Kong stocks fell the most in nearly six weeks on Wednesday, as signs of escalating Sino-U.S. tensions weighed on the market sentiment.

** At the close of trade, the Hang Seng index was down 577.72 points, or 2.25%, at 25,057.94, its biggest fall since June 11. The Hang Seng China Enterprises index fell 1.93% to 10,243.51.

** The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares rose 2.1%, while the IT sector dipped 4.66%, the financial sector ended 2.09% lower and the property sector dipped 2.6%.

** The top gainer on the Hang Seng was China Petroleum & Chemical Corp, which gained 4.52%, while the biggest loser was AAC Technologies Holdings Inc, which fell 7.02%.

** China said on Wednesday that the United States had abruptly told it to close its consulate in the city of Houston, a move that Beijing said it strongly condemns, threatening retaliation.

** China also asked the United States to immediately stop making accusations against it about cyber crimes, in response to the U.S. indictment of two Chinese nationals for hacking COVID-19 data and defence secrets.

** On Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the United States wants to build a global coalition to counter China as he accused Beijing of exploiting the coronavirus pandemic to further its own interests.

** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was weaker by 0.97%, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed down 0.58%.

** The yuan was quoted at 7.0029 per U.S. dollar at 08:21 GMT, 0.32% weaker than the previous close of 6.9807.

** At close, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 33.98% over Hong Kong-listed H-shares. (Reporting by the Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Rashmi Aich)

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