April 16, 2019 / 8:45 AM / 6 days ago

Hong Kong shares rise as China's economy seen stabilising

* Hang Seng index ends up 1.07 pct

* China Enterprises index HSCE rises 1.63 percent

* HSI financial sector sub-index +2 pct; property sector -0.4 pct

April 16 (Reuters) - Hong Kong’s benchmark equity index rose on Tuesday as stronger Chinese home price data signalled that the world’s second-largest economy could be stabilising, following attempts by Beijing to put a floor under slowing growth.

** The Hang Seng index gained 319.15 points or 1.07 percent to 30,129.87. The Hang Seng China Enterprises index rose 1.63 percent to 11,821.18. ** The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares rose 0.6 percent, while the IT sector added 1.18 percent, the financial sector ended 1.96 percent higher and the property sector dipped 0.43 percent. ** Average new home prices in China’s 70 major cities rose 10.6 percent in March on an annual basis, the highest since April 2017, and up from a 10.4 percent gain in February, according to Reuters calculations using data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Tuesday. ** Stronger housing prices are seen as adding to hopes for positive economic data on Wednesday, when China is due to release its first-quarter gross domestic product data. China’s first-quarter economic growth likely slowed to its weakest pace in at least 27 years, according to a Reuters poll, but stimulus measures are expected to set the stage for a recovery. ** But while China’s stimulus measures are likely to shore up economic growth this year and next, they may undermine the country’s drive to control debt and worsen structural distortions over the medium term, the OECD said in a report on Tuesday. ** The top gainer on the Hang Seng was China Construction Bank Corp, which rose 3.91 percent, while the biggest loser was Sunny Optical Technology Group Co Ltd, which fell 2.38 percent. ** China’s main Shanghai Composite index closed up 2.39 percent at 3,253.60, its highest close since March 22, 2018, while the blue-chip CSI300 index ended up 2.77 percent. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index gained 0.41 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed up 0.24 percent. ** The yuan was quoted at 6.7076 per U.S. dollar at 08:27 GMT, 0.01 percent firmer than the previous close of 6.7085. ** The top gainers among H-shares were China Construction Bank Corp up 3.91 percent, followed by Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd, up 3.08 percent and China Life Insurance Co Ltd, up 3.07 percent. ** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were Dongfeng Motor Group Co Ltd, down 2.05 percent, Great Wall Motor Co Ltd, which fell 1.7 percent and Air China Ltd , 1.6 percent lower. (Reporting by Andrew Galbraith; Editing by Shreejay Sinha)

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