Hong Kong shares close down 0.1 pct from 19-1/2 mth high

HONG KONG Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:05am GMT

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HONG KONG Jan 23 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares slipped from a 19-1/2-month high on Wednesday, pulled down by weakness among growth-sensitive counters as benchmark indexes faltered at chart resistance levels after a strong start to the year.

The Hang Seng Index closed down 0.1 percent at 23,635.1 after closing on Tuesday at its highest since June 1, 2011. The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong shed 0.3 percent.

In the mainland, the CSI300 index of the top Shanghai and Shenzhen A-share listings closed up 0.4 percent at 2,607.5. The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.3 percent.

HIGHLIGHTS:

* The Hang Seng Index reversed mild gains after failing in early trade at chart resistance at about 23,708, the high on May 31 and June 1, 2011.

* Chinese sportswear brand Li Ning tumbled 5.3 percent after one Hong Kong media report said the sector still faces inventory issues. The report said one outlet was selling items with discounts up to 90 percent. Wednesday's losses trimmed Li Ning's January gains to 23 percent.

* Insurer AIA Group continued its bounce from Monday's one-month low, rising 1.8 percent as investors piled into the laggard, attracted by its steady earnings potential, after taking profit on beta outperformers.

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