HONG KONG: Hong Kong stocks rose to another six-month high on hopes of a strong economic rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic and discounted values. Shares in mainland China lost momentum in the afternoon and closed lower, as investors looked for fresh cues for direction after the strong rally.

China’s blue-chip CSI 300 index dropped 0.19 percent, while the Shanghai Composite Index declined 0.24 percent. Hang Seng Index rose 0.49 percent and Hang Seng China Enterprises Index went up 0.65 percent.

Local production of the anti-viral COVID drug should be able to start soon, a Chinese health expert said on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Chinese banks extended 1.4 trillion yuan ($206.7 billion) in new yuan loans in December, up from November and beating analysts’ expectations, according to data released by the People’s Bank of China.

China’s central bank and top banking regulator also said they will increase financial backing for the domestic demand and supply system to support the economy, while ensuring steady and orderly financing to the property sector.


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