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Hong Kong Bourse Overdue For Correction

The Hong Kong stock market has climbed higher in six straight sessions, soaring more than 1,600 points or 6.2 percent along the way. The Hang Seng Index now rests just above the 26,660-point plateau although investors are likely to cash in on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets suggests mild consolidation on profit taking and a drop in crude oil prices. The European and U.S. markets were down and the Asian bourses are expected to follow that lead.

The Hang Seng finished modestly higher n Friday following gains from the financial shares, property stocks and oil and insurance companies.

For the day, the index jumped 145.84 points or 0.55 percent to finish at 26,667.27 after trading between 26,494.86 and 26,692.02.

Among the actives, AAC Technologies surged 5.00 percent, while Galaxy Entertainment plummeted 2.83 percent, China Resources Land soared 1.96 percent, CSPC Pharmaceutical plunged 1.31 percent, New World Development spiked 1.07 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) jumped 0.82 percent, CITIC skidded 0.80 percent, AIA Group climbed 0.75 percent, Tencent Holdings jumped 0.67 percent, Ping An Insurance advanced 0.65 percent, China Resources Power Holdings shed 0.63 percent, WH Group added 0.61 percent, Hong Kong & China Gas gained 0.48 percent, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China collected 0.35 percent, BOC Hong Kong gained 0.34 percent, China Mobile rose 0.31 percent, Sands China was up 0.28 percent, China Life perked 0.23 percent and CNOOC was unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is slightly soft as stocks opened lower on Friday, staged a recovery in the afternoon but still finished barely in the red.

The Dow shed 5.97 points or 0.02 percent to 23,995.95, while the NASDAQ lost 14.59 points or 0.21 percent to 6,971.48 and the S&P 500 fell 0.38 points or 0.01 percent to 2,596.26. For the week, the Dow added 2.4 percent, the NASDAQ added 3.5 percent and the S&P rose 2.5 percent.

The early weakness on Wall Street was due to profit taking, with traders cashing in on gains from the five-day winning streak. Concerns about the ongoing government shutdown and skepticism about a potential trade deal between the U.S. and China also weighed.

In economic news, the Labor Department noted a slight drop in consumer prices in December, while core consumer priced ticked slightly higher.

Crude oil futures ended lower Friday, snapping a nine-day winning streak as profit taking and worries about the slowing Chinese economy weighed on the commodity. Crude oil futures ended down $1.00 or 1.9 percent at $51.59 a barrel.

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