March 17, 2017 / 8:28 AM / a year ago

HK shares post best week in 6 months as risk sentiment improves

SHANGHAI, March 17 (Reuters) - Hong Kong’s benchmark share index ended little changed on Friday but still posted its biggest weekly gain in six months as global investors’ appetite for riskier assets improved despite expectations of further monetary tightening.

The market also drew support from steady inflows from mainland China, which helped push the valuation gap between Hong Kong and China stocks to the lowest level in more than two years.

The Hang Seng index ended up 0.1 percent at 24,309.93 points, after earlier hitting an intraday high of 24,385.81, the highest since August 2015.

The Hong Kong China Enterprises Index lost 0.1 percent to 10,513.52.

For the week, the HSI rose 3.1 percent, while the HSCE advanced 3.4 percent.

Risk appetite improved on Thursday after the Fed raised interest rates as expected, but stuck to its projection of three rate hikes this year, defying some market expectations for more aggressive tightening.

But in late trading on Friday, sentiment in Hong Kong was suppressed by weakness in China stocks, which had their worst day in three months on concerns over monetary tightening by China’s central bank.

Telecom stocks were among the lead gainers while consumer shares sagged.

An index tracking mainland developers slumped 2.4 percent as more Chinese cities adopt or ramp measures to cool heated home prices. (Reporting by Samuel Shen and John Ruwtich; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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