HK stocks rise ahead of Ant Group IPO, defy U.S. stimulus gloom

* Hang Seng index gains 0.46%

* China Enterprises index HSCE rises 0.33%

* Hang Seng Tech Index up 1.3%; property up 0.4%

HONG KONG, Oct 7 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares edged higher on Wednesday, shrugging off a weaker finish in Wall Street after U.S. President Donald Trump halted stimulus negotiations with lawmakers, with investors focusing on the upcoming IPO of China’s Ant Group.

** Ant Group, backed by Alibaba Group, is likely to be the world largest IPO and is set to raise up to $35 billion in a dual listing in Hong Kong and Shanghai likely this month.

** China-led IPOs accounted for 44% of IPOs in the world for the first three quarters with $57.4 billion worth of deals, more than double the amount for the same time last year.

** By midday, the Hang Seng index was up 111.32 points, or 0.46%, at 24,091.97, on track for a fourth consecutive session of gains.

** China’s H-shares index gained 0.33% to 9,568.40.

** The sub-index of Hang Seng tracking IT sector rose 1.33%, Hang Seng Tech Index climbed 1.3%, and the property edged up 0.87%. The energy index gained 0.48% and the financial sector edged up 0.2%.

** Sunny Optical, which gained 3.85%, was the top gainer on the Hang Seng, while CITIC Ltd was the top drag with a 1.4% drop.

** Chinese markets are closed for holidays until Oct. 9.

** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 0.89%, while Japan’s Nikkei index was down 0.15%.

** The top gainers among H-shares were Sunny Optical, followed by Meituan Dianping, which was up 2.25%, and Alibaba Group, which rose 2.21%

** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were China Minsheng Banking Corp, which was down 2.75%, followed by China Citic Bank Corp, which fell 1.67%, and CITIC Ltd. (Reporting by Donny Kwok; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

Nuestros Estándares: Los principios Thomson Reuters.