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Hong Kong shares end 2.33% higher


Hong Kong shares ended 2.33 percent higher on Friday, capping a tough week for global markets after China released data showing growth in the world's number two economy had slowed.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index added 501.05 points to end at 22,013.57 on turnover of HK$65.98 billion ($8.51 billion).

World markets were hit on Monday when China released figures showing the economy grew 7.7 percent in the January-March quarter, slower than expected and weaker than the 7.9 percent in the previous three months.

The news raised questions about the strength of a recent pick-up in the economy, which is a key driver of growth for other nations.

On Thursday the Hong Kong rally was helped by a jump in Shanghai that came thanks to reports in state media that China could approve as early as this month new investment quotas for overseas financial institutions looking to enter the market.

Lenovo rebounded 9.5 percent to HK$7.06 on news it is in talks to buy part of IBM's server unit. The jump follows a recent slump fuelled by concerns about demand for PCs after data showed sales had tumbled.

China Unicom climbed 7.3 percent to HK$10.26, while mainland developer China Overseas Land rose 5.8 percent on bargain-hunting.

HSBC rose 1.82 percent to HK$81.10, while Cathay Pacific added 0.77 percent to HK$13.08.

Chinese shares ended up 2.14 percent. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index jumped 47.04 points to 2,244.64 on turnover of 95.4 billion yuan ($15.4 billion). The index rose 1.72 percent for the week, despite Monday's poor data.

"The market rebounded after losses in previous sessions. News that overseas capital might enter the A-share market soon is also favourable to brokerages," Haitong Securities analyst Zhang Qi told AFP.

Founder Securities surged 8.87 percent to 7.24 yuan and China Citic Securities jumped 5.51 percent to 12.82 yuan.

Among lenders China Minsheng Banking advanced 8.13 percent to 10.11 yuan while Pudong Development Bank jumped 5.30 percent to 10.14 yuan.

A rebound in bullion prices from two-year lows earlier in the week helped Zhongjin Gold rise 2.76 percent to 12.64 yuan, while Zijin Mining climbed 1.92 percent to 3.19 yuan.