Hong Kong shares end lower ahead of key U.S. data
Sept 3 (Reuters) – Hong Kong shares finished lower on Friday, dragged down by tech stocks, as investors stood on the sidelines ahead of a key U.S. jobs data due later in the day for clues on the timing and pace of Federal Reserve’s plan to withdraw its pandemic-era stimulus.
** But, losses on the benchmark were limited by Hong Kong-listed Chinese brokerages after Beijing floated plans for a new stock exchange.
** At the close of trade, the Hang Seng index was down 188.44 points or 0.72% at 25,901.99 points, while the Hang Seng China Enterprises index fell 0.53% to 9,291,71.
** For the week, the HSI index gained 1.95%.
** The sub-index of Hang Seng tech shares ended 1.07% lower, while the financial sector fell 0.18%.
** Data on Thursday showed the number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits fell last week, although the focus will be on the Labor Department’s monthly jobs report to set the stage for the Fed’s policy meeting later this month.
** Alibaba was among the main drags on Friday after the company said it would invest 100 billion yuan ($15.49 billion) by 2025 in support of “common prosperity”, raising concerns over possible impact on the company’s balance sheet and new crackdown on the tech sector, some analysts said.
** Other companies that have made similar announcements include Tencent Holdings, which also pledged 100 billion yuan.
** Losses were somehow capped by Chinese brokerage shares after China’s President Xi Jinping said the country would set up a stock exchange in its capital, Beijing, to serve small- and medium-sized enterprises.
** Shares of Hong Kong-listed Chinese brokerages, including Shenwan Hongyuan Group Co and CICC jumped, with investors betting they will benefit from more initial public offerings.
($1 = 6.4552 Chinese yuan)
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