March 18 (Reuters) - Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose nearly 1 percent to close at one-week high on Wednesday, following bullish mainland markets, but investors remain wary of prospects for tighter liquidity when U.S. interest rates eventually increase.
China’s benchmark indexes, the CSI300 and the Shanghai Composite Index, both jumped more than 2 percent and hit the highest level in nearly seven years, on hopes that Beijing will unveil fresh stimulus to bolster the economy.
But gains in Hong Kong shares have been more subdued.
The Hang Seng index rose 0.9 percent, to 24,120.08, while the China Enterprises Index gained 1.2 percent, to 11,981.97 points.
The index measuring price differences between dual-listed companies in Shanghai and Hong Kong rose to a two-month high of 133, meaning mainland-listed companies are 33 percent more expensive than their Hong Kong peers.
Analysts say the fading links between the two markets are the result of diverging economic prospects. China is easing monetary policy to bolster growth while money may be lured out of Hong Kong as the U.S. Federal Reserve gets closer to raising interest rates.
Among the most actively traded stocks on Hong Kong’s main board were Ali Pictures, down 1.9 percent to HK$2.65 Suncorp Tech, up 5.2 percent to HK$0.61 and Solartech International, up 21.2 percent to HK$0.08.
Total trading volume of companies included in the HSI index was 1.7 billion shares. (Samuel Shen and Pete Sweeney)