Hong Kong Stocks Decline for Fourth Day as Developers Slide

Hong Kong stocks fell, with the benchmark index dropping for a fourth day, as property developers declined amid plunging real estate sales.

China Resources Land Ltd., a state-owned developer, slid 2.1 percent. China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., a mainland refiner, retreated 1.4 percent after a commodity researcher said China may cut retail gasoline and diesel prices today. AAC Technologies Holdings Inc., a maker of miniature acoustic components, jumped 5.8 percent after its profit beat estimates.

The Hang Seng Index slid 0.3 percent to 20,484.75 at the close, posting its longest losing streak since April 2. Almost twice as many stocks declined as rose on volume 7.9 percent below the 30-day average. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland stocks slid 0.5 percent to 10,525.75.

“In the short term, the Hong Kong market is still going lower,” said Alex Wong, asset-management director at Ample Capital Ltd. in Hong Kong. “There are some bearish factors in the making in China. The outlook isn’t too good. People have already discounted” positive news from the mainland.

Hong Kong’s benchmark index fell 5.5 percent from its peak on Feb. 29 as China’s economy showed signs of slowing down, and amid renewed concern about Europe’s debt crisis. Shares on the index traded at 10.4 times estimated earnings on average, compared with 13 times on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, while the average on the Stoxx Europe 600 Index is 10.6.

Developers Drop

A measure of property developers had the biggest drop among the Hang Seng Index’s four industry groups. China Resources Land fell 2.1 percent to HK$13.96. Agile Property Holdings Ltd., a mainland developer, sank 3.7 percent to HK$9.33, while Soho China Ltd., a property developer in central Beijing and Shanghai, retreated 2.7 percent to HK$5.82.

Residential land sales in major Chinese cities plunged 92 percent in the period from April 30 to May 6 from the previous week, real estate website Soufun Holdings Ltd. said yesterday in an e-mailed statement.

China Petroleum & Chemical slipped 1.4 percent to HK$7.90, while state-owned refiner PetroChina Co. fell 0.7 percent to HK$10.88. China may cut retail gasoline and diesel prices today after crude costs fell, C1 Energy, a Shanghai-based commodity researcher that has correctly reported price adjustments ahead of official announcements, said on its website today.

“Fuel price cuts will put pressure on the refining margins of China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. and PetroChina Co.,” Shi Yan, an analyst with UOB-Kay Hian Ltd., said by telephone.

Among stocks that rose, AAC Technologies rose 5.8 percent to HK$22.70 after saying net income for the three months ended March 31 was 314 million yuan ($49.8 million), beating the 298 million yuan median analysts’ estimate.

Hang Seng Index futures expiring this month dropped 0.2 percent to 20,273. The HSI Volatility Index slid 4.8 percent to 21.23, indicating traders expect a swing of about 6.1 percent in the benchmark index during the next 30 days.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE