May 30, 2018 / 8:35 AM / 4 months ago

HK stocks hit 3-week closing low on trade war fears, Italy political woes

* HSI -1.4 pct, HSCE -1.6 pct, CSI300 -2.1 pct

* HSI financial sector sub-index 1.5 percent lower; property sector down 1.3 percent

* Sentiment hurt by renewed trade war fears

May 30 (Reuters) - Hong Kong stocks fell to a three-week closing low on Wednesday, with investor sentiment dampened by the political crisis in Italy and renewed fears over a Sino-U.S. trade war.

** The Hang Seng index fell 1.4 percent, to 30,056.79, while the China Enterprises Index lost 1.6 percent, to 11,769.16 points.

** Investors fear that repeat elections in Italy - which could come as soon as July - may become a de-facto referendum on Italian membership of the currency bloc and the country’s role in the European Union.

** Adding to pressure were worries over trade tensions between China and the United States. The United States said on Tuesday that it would continue pursuing actions on trade with China, days after Washington and Beijing announced a tentative solution to their dispute and suggested that tensions had cooled. **The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares dipped 0.6 percent, while the IT sector declined 1.54 percent, the financial sector was 1.52 percent lower and the property sector fell 1.3 percent. ** The top gainer on Hang Seng was CNOOC Ltd, up 0.78 percent, while the biggest loser was WH Group Ltd, which was down 3.11 percent. ** China’s blue-chip CSI300 index fell 2.1 percent, to 3,723.37, while the Shanghai Composite Index dropped 2.5 percent to 3,041.44. ** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was weaker by 1.26 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei index closed down 1.52 percent. ** The yuan was quoted at 6.4243 per U.S. dollar at 08:20 GMT, 0.15 percent weaker than the previous close of 6.415. ** As of the previous trading session, the Hang Seng index was up 1.89 percent this year, while China’s H-share index was up 2.1 percent. As of the previous close, the Hang Seng has declined 1.05 percent this month. ** The top gainers among H-shares were Postal Savings Bank of China Co Ltd up 1.14 percent, followed by CNOOC Ltd gaining 0.78 percent and ZhongAn Online P & C Insurance Co Ltd up by 0.2 percent. ** The three biggest H-shares percentage decliners were Haitong Securities Co Ltd, which was down 2.66 percent, Sinopharm Group Co Ltd, which fell 2.6 percent, and GF Securities Co Ltd, down by 2.6 percent. ** About 2.48 billion Hang Seng index shares were traded, roughly 152.2 percent of the market’s 30-day moving average of 1.63 billion shares a day. The volume traded in the previous trading session was 1.71 billion. ** At close, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 19.20 percent over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. ** The price-to-earnings ratio of the Hang Seng index was 12.13 as of the last full trading day, while the dividend yield was 3.2 percent. (Reporting by the Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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