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Coronavirus
LOW
Source: covid.gov.pk
Pakistan Deaths
28,793
924hr
Pakistan Cases
1,287,703
31024hr
Sindh
477,119
Punjab
443,610
Balochistan
33,514
Islamabad
107,989
KPK
180,471

SHANGHAI: China stocks fell on Friday as domestic COVID-19 cases and a new and possibly vaccine-resistant coronavirus variant weighed on investor sentiment, with semiconductor-related and energy shares leading the drop.

The CSI300 index fell 0.6% to 4,865.00 by the end of the morning session, while the Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.5% to 3,566.18. The Hang Seng index dropped 2.1% to 24,213.55. The Hong Kong China Enterprises Index lost 2.1% to 8,626.31.

** For the week, the CSI300 index has shed 0.5%, while the Hang Seng Index lost 3.3%. Hong Kong stocks set to post their biggest weekly decline in 10.

** A handful of local COVID-19 cases in eastern parts of China have prompted Shanghai city to limit tourism activities and a nearby city to cut public transportation services.

** That sent tourism stocks and consumer staples down 1.6% and 0.6%, respectively.

** Meanwhile, the real estate sub-index, the energy sub-index, the semiconductor sub-index dropped between 1.3% and 2.8%.

** In the global market, the detection of a new and possibly vaccine-resistant coronavirus variant in South Africa spooked investors, pushing them to dump risk assets and flock to safe havens.

** Refinitiv data showed outflows of more than 1 billion yuan through the Northbound legs of the Stock Connect programme ,, showing overseas investors were net sellers of A-shares.

** Morgan Stanley said it continues to prefer A-shares in the China space and will wait for a better entry point.

** "Recent remarks around a policy easing stance and an A-share structural inflow catalyst are positive, but pressure lingers on the earnings front and consensus' estimates reduction could last for longer," Morgan Stanley said in a note.

** Hong Kong shares tracked global markets lower as the new COVID-19 variant weighed on sentiment.

** Tech giants tumbled 2.6%, with Tencent Holdings , Meituan, and Alibaba Group down between 3% and 4%.

** The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that some Chinese state-run companies were restricting employees' use of Tencent's messaging app Weixin, citing security concerns.

** Gambling stocks slumped 4.5%.

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