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Hong Kong shares seen lower, set for first monthly loss in three

Source : REUTERS
Last Updated: Fri, Aug 31, 2012 01:10 hrs

HONG KONG, Aug 31 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares could start lower on Friday, set for their first monthly loss in three, with investors further unwinding positions in riskier assets of an annual Wyoming meeting of central bankers later in the day.

GOME Electrical Applicances and Warren Buffett-backed Chinese automaker BYD Co Ltd are among the companies expected to post corporate earnings later in the day.

On Thursday, the Hang Seng Index fell below its 200-day moving average to end down 1.2 percent to 19,552.9, the lowest close since July 27.

This week, the Hang Seng benchmark is down 1.6 percent so far. It is down 1.2 percent in August to date.

Elsewhere in Asia, Japan's Nikkei was down 0.7 percent, while South Korea's KOSPI was flat at 0049 GMT.

FACTORS TO WATCH:

* The Hong Kong property sector could come into focus after Hong Kong's new leader laid out a long-awaited housing policy on Thursday, promising 65,000 new residential flats in the next three to four years, but analysts lamented the lack of fresh measures to cool the red-hot property market.

* Property developers Wing Tai Properties and privately held Manhattan won a government tender for land in Hong Kong on Thursday for HK$3.0 billion ($386.8 million), a rare win for smaller developers in a market dominated by Sun Hung Kai Properties and Cheung Kong (Holdings) .

* Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the world's biggest lender by market value, posted on Thursday its smallest earnings growth since the global financial crisis, in the clearest sign yet that a slowing Chinese economy has put an end to the days of easy bank profits.

* Bank of Communications (BoCom) , China's fifth-biggest lender, posted an 18 percent rise in net profit during the January-June period, its slowest first-half growth in three years, as a slowing economy sapped demand for loans.

* CITIC Securities , China's biggest listed brokerage, posted a 24 percent drop in first-half profit as a sluggish stock market hurt trading commission incomes, the company's main source of revenue.

* Chinese group ZTE, the world's fourth-largest mobile phone maker, unveiled its first smartphone model using Intel processors, marking an important break into a top-tier handset maker by the U.S.-based group.

* Chinese construction and engineering firm Metallurgical Corporation of China Ltd posted 186.1 million yuan loss for the first half of 2012, against a 1.97 billion yuan profit in a year ago period.

* China's top railway construction company China Railway Group said its first half net profit slid 2.2 percent to 2.39 billion yuan.

* Shanghai-based airline China Eastern Airlines Corp Ltd

posted a 65 percent decline in first half net profit to 806.9 million yuan.

* Agile Property Holdings Ltd said its chairman Chen Zhuo Lin was arrested by Hong Kong police with an allegation of indecent assault and is now released on bail. It said the allegation is unrelated to the company and will not affect its operations. For statement, http://www.hkexnews.hk/listedco/listconews/sehk/2012/0831/LTN20120831058.pdf (Reporting by Clement Tan and Donny Kwok; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)




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