China, Hong Kong shares fall; resource sector hit by economic gloom
* CSI300 -0.7 pct; SSEC -0.8 pct; HSI: -0.4 pct
* China's outstanding margin loans fall to 18-month low
* Resource shares drop on lower commodity prices
SHANGHAI, May 24 (Reuters) - Chinese and Hong Kong shares fell in line with regional markets on Tuesday, with resource companies slumping as commodity prices tumble amid worries over China's economic health.
Investors are also increasingly worried about the likelihood of a U.S. interest rate increase in coming weeks.
China's blue-chip CSI300 index fell 0.7 percent, to 3,064.72 points by the lunch break, while the Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.8 percent, to 2,821.79 points.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index dropped 0.4 percent, while the Hong Kong China Enterprises Index lost 0.7 percent.
Trading volumes in both markets were thin, reflecting weak risk appetite.
In China, outstanding margin loans - money investors borrow to buy stocks - shrank to the lowest level in 18 months, while many newly-launched mutual funds have been forced to slash their fundraising targets due to weak demand. Continuación...