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Hong Kong shares close down 0.9 pct; China property, insurance sink

Source : REUTERS
Last Updated: Tue, Jan 08, 2013 08:20 hrs

HONG KONG, Jan 8 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares closed at their lowest in a week on Tuesday, as investors took profit on mainland property counters after an official media report raised fears of more stringent enforcement of sector curbs, stalling its strong gains in recent months.

The Hang Seng Index closed down 0.9 percent at 23,111.1, its lowest since Jan. 2. The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong fell 2.2 percent.

In the mainland, the CSI300 of top Shanghai and Shenzhen listings closed down 0.4 percent at 2,525.3. The Shanghai Composite Index shed 0.4 percent. Both indexes had closed at their highest since mid-June on Monday.

HIGHLIGHTS:

* In a front page editorial, the official China Securities Journal said stricter implementation of curbs on the property sector is necessary to control home prices as the market expects them to climb significantly in the first half of this year. Longfor Properties and Evergrande fell 2.3 and 1.5 percent, respectively, despite posting December sales that helped both companies exceed their stated 2012 targets.

* Ping An Insurance sank 4.0 percent after sources told Reuters that state-run China Development Bank (CDB) has expressed concern over the funding behind the effort of Thai conglomerate CP Group to buy HSBC's stake in China's second-largest insurer.




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