HK shares slide as crude price dip pulls down oil cos
* Hang Seng index down 1.5 pct, gives up earlier gains
* Mainland markets still closed, keeps turnover subdued
* Oil cos slip as crude prices ease, Sinopec down 4.2 pct
* Wynn, Sands China lead Macau casino operators lower (Updates to midday)
By Vikram S.Subhedar
HONG KONG/SHANGHAI, Feb 7 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares fell on Monday, with losses accelerating into the close as oil companies were hit by easing crude prices.
Overall turnover remained subdued with mainland markets still closed and conviction among investors low.
The Hang Seng index fell 1.5 percent to 23,553.6, closing below a chart resistance level and failing to hold mild gains seen at the open. The index had jumped 1.8 percent on the last trading day before the Lunar New Year holiday.
Hong Kong's benchmark stock index is up 2.2 percent so far this year, helped largely by a strong performance in the first two weeks of 2011.
That rally stalled in the second half of January as a tepid Shanghai market and a pull-back in risky emerging market assets prompted profit-taking.
"Client conviction is low," said a Hong Kong-based equity trader at a large U.S. bank.
"Its too high to buy and shorting is not working and that's keeping volumes low," said the trader, adding that there was talk that inflation in China in March would reach 6 percent.
Concern over rising consumer prices, in particular food, has hit emerging markets in Asia this year as funds pulled money from high inflation countries such as Indonesia and India, favouring developed markets and North Asia instead.
Investors pulled $7 billion out of emerging market equity funds in the week of Feb. 4, the biggest outflow in three years, data from fund tracker EPFR Global showed, putting a sizeable dent in the record inflows seen in this category in 2010.
A dip in oil prices following the nearly 2 percent fall in U.S. crude futures on Friday weighed on major oil producers, which were the biggest drag on the Hang Seng index.
CNOOC fell 2.9 percent while refiner Sinopec dropped 4.2 percent, easing from a more than two-year high.
Brewers were another casualty of rising raw material costs, despite efforts by some beer makers to raise prices to pass on some of the burden to consumers.
Higher costs of barley and sugar are expected to erode profit margins, said analysts. Tsingtao Brewery slumped 5.2 percent and is down 27 percent from a record high set in September last year.
Casino operators were broadly lower with shares of Wynn Macau Ltd. the hardest hit, down 5.9 percent, after worse-than-expected revenue from rival Las Vegas Sands prompted investors to cash in on recent gains.
Wynn shares hit a record high on Jan. 28 and are still up about 11 percent this year, building on last year's mammoth 82.2 percent rise. (Editing by Alex Richardson) Pan-Asia...... Japan........ S.Korea.... S.E. Asia............ Hong Kong... Taiwan..... Australia/NZ......... India....... China......
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