April 15 (Reuters) - Hong Kong stocks held firm on Wednesday despite China's weak economic growth data, amid signs that Chinese mutual fund managers were raising billions of dollars as they sought bargains in the city.
The Hang Seng index ended up 0.2 percent, to 27,618.82, while the China Enterprises Index gained 1.5 percent, to 14,471.82 points.
China's economy grew 7 percent in the first quarter - the worst showing since the depths of the global financial crisis, data showed, souring sentiment in China's stock market.
But Hong Kong stocks held ground as some analysts forecast that about 100 billion yuan ($16.1 billion) could be raised by Chinese mutual fund managers in April to invest in the city's stock market.
Invesco Ltd's China fund venture has raised about 11 billion yuan for China's first mutual fund to invest under the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect scheme, two sources told Reuters.
"Most of China's small-cap companies are expensive, but in Hong Kong, some small caps are seriously undervalued, while some others are rationally priced," said Huang Ruiqing, fund manager at Bosera Asset Management Co, which will also launch a fund to invest in Hong Kong next week.
Among the most actively traded stocks on Hong Kong's main board were Landing International Development, up 28.3 percent to HK$0.15, Ping Shan Tea, down 4.1 percent to HK$0.05 and GOME, down 6.4 percent to HK$2.05.
Total trading volume of companies included in the HSI index was 4.0 billion shares.
$1 = 6.2034 Chinese yuan Reporting by the Samuel Shen and Pete Sweeney; Editing by Jacqueline Wong