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Hong Kong shares seen inching up, 2nd monthly gain in sight

Source : REUTERS
Last Updated: Fri, Nov 30, 2012 18:42 hrs

HONG KONG, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares could end November on a slightly positive note, reflecting cautious optimism that a budget deal to avert a U.S. fiscal crisis will be reached, with the benchmark Hang Seng Index set for a consecutive monthly gain.

On Thursday, the Hang Seng Index closed up 1 percent at 21,922.9 points. It is now flat on the week, up 1.3 percent on the month and up 18.9 percent on the year.

The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong ended up 0.9 percent on Thursday. It is still down 1.1 percent this week, down 0.9 percent in November, but up 5.6 percent in 2012 so far.

Elsewhere in Asia, Japan's Nikkei was up 0.1 percent, while South Korea's KOSPI was flat at 0055 GMT.

FACTORS TO WATCH:

* Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd said on Friday it planned to sell up to HK$7.75 billion ($1 billion) worth of new shares, raising capital to fund its takeover of the London Metal Exchange (LME).

* Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group Ltd, the world's biggest jewellery retailer by market value, on Thursday posted a disappointing slump in six-month profit and is targeting e-commerce as a pillar of future growth and was upbeat about a near-term pick-up in China's luxury spending and the prospect of strong longer-term demand due to increasing wealth and spending power in smaller cities.

* Yum Brands Inc said it expects to post a decline in fourth-quarter sales at established restaurants in China, where a cooling economy is making it difficult to beat the strong gain it reported a year earlier.

* Top Asian refiner Sinopec is expected to raise its crude runs by 6 percent to 7 percent in 2013 from this year, responding to a government forecast that China's oil demand will grow 4 percent next year, company president Wang Tianpu said.

* Hong Kong-listed Brightoil Petroleum Holdings is keen to buy more upstream gas assets to secure long-term growth and aims to sell more crude and chemicals to China, the world's largest energy consumer, Chairman Raymond Sit said.




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