China stocks down at midday in thin trading; Hong Kong shares up
* CSI300 -0.24 pct; SSEC -0.15 pct; HSI +0.59 pct;
* Trading volume in Shanghai thin ahead of Lunar New Year
* China stocks may see consolidation for months - trader
SHANGHAI, Feb 12 (Reuters) - China stocks retreated early on Thursday despite fresh central bank moves to improve short-term liquidity, as investor confidence was not strong enough to extend a three-day winning streak for the main indexes.
Traders said the People's Bank of China has injected a net 205 billion yuan ($32.82 billion) into the money market this week, the biggest weekly injection since January.
And late on Wednesday, the central bank said it would increase credit to some financial institutions through a lending facility to ameliorate short-term cash shortages ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday.
"In addition to easing policies we see today, there could be further cuts in interest rates and reserve requirements ahead," said Wu Kan, head of equity trading at investment firm Shanshan Finance in Shanghai.
"But these tools are designed either to ease short-term liquidity, or cushion the impact of slower economic growth," he said. "Fundamentals of the economy remain poor."
Wu added that the market, which surged about 50 percent over the past few months, has entered a "consolidation period" that may last for three months. Continuación...