July 21, 2024

Hong Kong stocks arrest 7-day slump as mainland China funds step up purchases with market trading at 14-month low

Hong Kong stocks jumped, snapping a seven-day slide, after mainland Chinese fund managers added to their purchases as the market reached the lowest level since November 2022 this week. Sentiment improved amid bullish trades in US and Asian equities.

The Hang Seng Index added 1.4 per cent to 16,320.00 at 10.35am local time. The Tech Index jumped 1.7 per cent while the Shanghai Composite Index was little changed near the lowest level since May 2020.

WuXi Biologics surged 12.7 per cent to HK$31.55 and Meituan rallied 5.2 per cent to HK$75.45. Tencent gained 3.1 per cent to HK$288.80 and Alibaba Group advanced 2.5 per cent to HK$71. China’s top EV maker BYD added 3 per cent to HK$210.80 while peer Xpeng climbed 2.3 per cent to HK$49.55.

Before today, the Hang Seng Index had declined more than 5 per cent following losses in every trading day in the new year. The slump sent the 14-day relative strength indicator closer toward an oversold territory, attracting buyers.

“China’s economic recovery, although bumpy, could lead to an improvement in corporate earnings and market sentiment in 2024,” Rickie Jia, a portfolio manager at Pictet in Hong Kong, said in a media briefing on Wednesday. “This, coupled with inexpensive valuations and light positioning among investors, means we remain tactically positive on Chinese equities.”

Citigroup, HSBC trim Hang Seng Index targets on earnings, China policy doubts

Mainland funds bought HK$2.6 billion worth of Hong Kong-listed shares on Wednesday, taking their net purchases this year to HK$11.5 billion, according to Stock Connect data. Separately, offshore investors spent US$99 million to pick up A shares over the past two days.

US equities gained overnight, while the Japanese stock benchmark approached the highest level in three decades. The Nikkei 225 rallied 1.8 per cent, while South Korea’s Kospi added 0.3 per cent and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.4 per cent.

Gains may be curtailed before China publishes more data on Friday. Consumer prices probably fell 0.4 per cent in December, following a 0.5 per cent drop in November, according to economists tracked by Bloomberg. Exports are expected to grow 1.5 per cent versus a 0.5 per cent rise in November.

Three stocks debuted on Thursday. Suzhou West Deane New Power jumped 45 per cent to 42.30 yuan in Shanghai. Hefei Snowky Electric surged 95 per cent to 30.06 yuan in Shenzhen, and Beijing Yunxingyu Traffic Tech soared 135 per cent to 10.88 yuan.

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