Plus   Neg

Hong Kong Bourse Expected To Halt Losing Streak

The Hong Kong stock market has moved lower in five straight sessions, tumbling more than 1,625 points or 6.1 percent along the way. The Hang Seng Index now rests just above the 26,345-point plateau although it's overdue for support on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is cautiously optimistic thanks to a spike in crude oil prices. The European markets were slightly higher and the U.S. bourses were mixed but little changed - and the Asian markets figure to split the difference.

The Hang Seng finished modestly lower on Wednesday following losses from the casinos, pharmaceuticals and financials.

For the day, the index dropped 77.51 points or 0.29 percent to end at 26,345.04 after trading between 26,219.56 and 26,468.91.

Among the actives, CSPC Pharmaceutical plummeted 9.73 percent, while Galaxy Entertainment plunged 4.99 percent, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China and Sands China both tumbled 2.01 percent, WH Group skidded 1.85 percent, CNOOC soared 1.43 percent, Ping An Insurance dropped 1.37 percent, AIA Group jumped 1.29 percent, Hong Kong & China Gas advanced 0.90 percent, China Mobile shed 0.53 percent, BOC Hong Kong lost 0.42 percent, New World Development fell 0.41 percent, China Life slid 0.36 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) added 0.27 percent and Tencent Holdings gained 0.13 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is murky as stocks showed a lack of direction on Wednesday before ending mixed and roughly flat.

The Dow added 27.86 points or 0.11 percent to 25,998.92, while the NASDAQ fell 18.25 points or 0.23 percent to 7,954.23 and the S&P 500 gained 1.03 points or 0.04 percent to 2,888.92.

Traders seemed reluctant to make significant moves amid lingering uncertainty about the trade dispute between the U.S. and China, despite reports of a new round of talks in the near future.

In economic news, the Labor Department noted a drop in producer prices in August, while the Federal Reserve's Beige Book said the U.S. economy expanded at a moderate pace through the end of August.

Crude oil prices climbed higher on Wednesday after the U.S. Energy Information Administration noted a drop in crude inventories last week. Crude oil futures for October delivery ended up $1.12 or 1.6 percent at $70.37 a barrel, the best settlement price in about eight weeks.

Closer to home, Hong Kong will release Q2 figures for industrial production later today; in the three months prior, industrial production was up 1.3 percent on quarter and 1.1 percent on year.

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