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Hong Kong stocks up 0.19% by break

Hong Kong shares ended the morning session 0.19 percent higher on Wednesday, despite a weak Wall Street lead as buying picked up after two straight sessions of losses. The benchmark Hang Seng Index rose 41.69 points to 22,358.89 by lunch on turnover of HK$29.87 billion ($3.85 billion). dan/

China's $12 trillion corporate debt pushes up refunding costs, drives mergers

By Matthew Miller and Umesh Desai BEIJING/HONG KONG (Reuters) - China's corporate debt has hit record levels and is likely to accelerate a wave of domestic restructuring and trigger more defaults, as credit repayment problems rise. Chinese non-financial companies held total outstanding bank borrowing and bond debt of about $12 trillion at the end of last year - equal to over 120 percent of GDP - according to Standard & Poor's estimates.

Hong Kong stocks down 1.28% by break

Hong Kong shares fell 1.28 percent by the break on Monday in line with other regional bourses following a weak lead from Wall Street. The benchmark Hang Seng Index lost 289.29 points to 22,278.95 on turnover of HK$30.96 billion ($4 billion). erf/ac

China banks strike back against threat from Internet finance

By Gabriel Wildau SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China's brick-and-mortar banks are launching a counter-attack against the assault on their business from Alibaba and other Internet heavyweights, in a bid to staunch the outflow of bank deposits into high-yielding online investment products.

China's foreign minister on rare visit to Iraq

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrived in Iraq on Sunday in the first such visit since before the 2003 US-led invasion, the foreign ministry said. It is "the first visit to Baghdad by a high-ranking Chinese official since 2003," the ministry said in a statement on its website. Wang and senior officials will discuss "developing bilateral relations and regional and international issues", the statement said. Oil is likely to be on the agenda.

China's foreign minister on rare visit to Iraq

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrived in Iraq on Sunday in the first such visit since before the 2003 US-led invasion, the foreign ministry said. It is "the first visit to Baghdad by a high-ranking Chinese official since 2003," the ministry said in a statement on its website. Wang and senior officials will discuss "developing bilateral relations and regional and international issues", the statement said. Oil is likely to be on the agenda.

Hong Kong stocks close down 1.19%

Hong Kong shares fell 1.19 percent Thursday, tracking regional bourses after a key index of Chinese manufacturing data slumped to a seven-month low. The benchmark Hang Seng Index lost 270.44 points to 22,394.08 on turnover of HK$71.12 billion ($9.17 billion). British bank HSBC said a preliminary reading for its China purchasing managers' index (PMI), which tracks manufacturing activity, fell to a seven-month low of 48.3 in February, in a sign of diminishing strength in the world's second-largest economy.

Hong Kong stocks end 0.34% higher

Hong Kong shares rose 0.34 percent on Wednesday, reversing earlier losses, as investors await US housing data after a broadly positive lead from Wall Street. The benchmark Hang Seng Index added 76.8 points to end at 22,664.52 on turnover of HK$60.06 billion ($7.74 billion). Chinese Internet giant Tencent shed 0.34 percent to HK$582.5, while HSBC Holdings gained 1.8 percent to HK$84.85, Evergrande added 1.68 percent to HK$3.64 and China Mobile ended flat, edging up 0.07 percent to HK$73.7.

China launches cross-border yuan payment services in FTZ

China has launched yuan-denominated cross-border payment services in its first free trade zone (FTZ), the central bank said, in an effort to facilitate trade and further internationalisation of the Chinese currency. Five companies -- AllinPay, 99Bill, ChinaPay, Orient Electronic Payment and Shengpay -- were given the greenlight to process yuan payments for cross-border trade in the FTZ, the Shanghai office of the People's Bank of China said late Tuesday in a statement.

Hong Kong stocks close 0.23% higher

Hong Kong shares extended the previous day's gains to close up 0.23 percent Tuesday. The benchmark Hang Seng Index ended up 51.78 points to 22,587.72 on turnover of HK$55.4 billion ($7.14 billion). The market had no cues from Wall Street, which was closed for the Presidents' Day holiday.
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