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Hong Kong Shares Predicted To Open In The Red

The Hong Kong stock market on Wednesday wrote a finish to the three-day winning streak in which it had picked up more than 410 points or 1.7 percent. The Hang Seng Index now rests just above the 24,725-point plateau and it may extend its losses on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed to lower after the Federal Reserve downgraded its GDP forecast. The European markets were mixed and the U.S. bourses were mostly in the red and the Asian markets also figure to open lower.

The Hang Seng finished barely lower on Wednesday following losses from the financials and casinos, while the oil and insurance companies were mixed.

For the day, the index eased 7.13 points or 0.03 percent to finish at 24,725.63 after trading between 24,635.24 and 24,829.87.

Among the actives, China Resources Land surged 3.09 percent, while Wharf Real Estate soared 2.60 percent, China Mengniu Dairy plummeted 2.14 percent, Hang Lung Properties spiked 1.68 percent, CITIC plunged 1.21 percent, Sun Hung Kai Properties accelerated 1.20 percent, CNOOC rallied 1.11 percent, Sino Land tanked 1.04 percent, AIA Group tumbled 0.98 percent, Tencent Holdings jumped 0.94 percent, Sands China skidded 0.87 percent, China Mobile retreated 0.84 percent, Industrial and Commercial Bank declined 0.70 percent, BOC Hong Kong and Henderson Land both surrendered 0.68 percent, Galaxy Entertainment sank 0.67 percent, China Life Insurance dropped 0.66 percent, Hengan International shed 0.60 percent, Techtronic Industries advanced 0.58 percent, AAC Technologies lost 0.53 percent, Hong Kong & China Gas fell 0.52 percent, CSPC Pharmaceutical added 0.50 percent, Ping An Insurance gained 0.48 percent, Power Assets rose 0.36 percent, WH Group increased 0.30 percent and China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) dipped 0.30 percent.

The lead from Wall Street suggests consolidation as stocks were unable to hold early gains on Wednesday, slipping mostly into the red in the final hour of trade.

The Dow added 36.78 points or 0.13 percent to finish at 28,032.38, while the NASDAQ plunged 139.86 points or 1.25 percent to end at 11,050.47 and the S&P 500 fell 15.71 points or 0.46 percent to close at 3,385.49.

The late-day pullback came despite a dovish monetary policy announcement by the Fed, with the central bank leaving interest rates unchanged and signaling rates are likely to remain at near-zero levels for years to come.

But the Fed also downwardly revised its estimates for GDP growth in 2021 and 2022 to 4.0 percent and 3.0 percent, respectively. GDP growth in 2023 was forecast at 2.5 percent.

The sharp drop by the NASDAQ came as big-name tech companies like Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB), Netflix (NFLX) and Amazon (AMZN) gave ground after solid gains a day earlier.

In economic news, the Commerce Department noted a slowdown in the pace of retail sales growth in August. Also, the National Association of Home Builders said homebuilder confidence jumped to a record high in September.

Crude oil prices rose sharply on Wednesday, extending gains from the previous session after data showed an unexpected drop in U.S. crude inventories last week. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for December ended up $1.88 or 4.9 percent at $40.16 a barrel.

Closer to home, Hong Kong will release August unemployment numbers later today; in July, the jobless rate was 6.1 percent.

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