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Hong Kong shares dip 0.31%

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Hong Kong shares slipped 0.31 percent Thursday following losses on Wall Street as dealers grow concerned about whether the US Federal Reserve will wind down its stimulus programme.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index eased 67.97 points to 21,900.96 on turnover of HK$45.33 billion (US$5.85 billion).

The profit-taking came despite Beijing on Wednesday unveiling measures labelled a "small" economic stimulus, including easing the tax burden of small firms, investment in railways and export incentives.

"After a 500-point rally on Tuesday, it's no surprise to see some pullback," Daniel So, a wealth management strategist at SHK Financial, told Down Jones Newswires.

Financial shares, which surged Tuesday after Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said growth should not be allowed to fall below seven percent, closed mostly lower. ICBC fell 0.8 percent to HK$5.10 and HSBC was off 0.6 percent at HK$87.55.

China Construction Bank bucked the trend, finishing up 0.7 percent at HK$5.76. Shares of Hong Kong insurer AIA slumped ahead of a first-half earnings report expected Friday. The stock fell 1.7 percent to HK$35.70.

China Railway Construction shares rose 2.5 percent to HK$8.23, putting its gains this week at 11 percent.

Chinese shares closed down 0.60 percent. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index fell 12.16 points to 2,021.17 on turnover of 86.25 billion yuan ($14.05 billion).

"The fine-tuning measures are unlikely to arrest China's economic downturn in the short term. So, investors are not excited about them," Tebon Securities analyst Zhang Haidong told Dow Jones.

Media shares were among the biggest losers. Chengdu B-ray Media fell 9.98 percent to 22.01 yuan and Zhejiang Daily Media Group shed 9.35 percent to 29.39 yuan.

As in Hong Kong, railway shares were up, with Daqin Railway rising 3.77 percent to 6.06 yuan, Guangshen Railway gaining 3.42 percent to 2.42 yuan and China's biggest train maker CSR advancing 3.07 percent to 4.03 yuan.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130725/hong-kong-shares-dip-031