Hong Kong and Chinese shares have fallen as investors ignored a rally on Wall Street ahead of the release of Chinese first quarter growth data.
The benchmark Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong lost 1.60 per cent on Tuesday, or 367.54 points, to 22,671.26 on turnover of $HK63.61 billion ($A8.74 billion).
Wall Street provided a positive lead after last week’s heavy losses on concerns about tech plays. The Dow rallied 0.91 per cent and the S&P 500 gained 0.82 per cent, while the Nasdaq, which lost more than three per cent last week, added 0.57 per cent.
The gains came after the government said US retail sales jumped 1.1 per cent in March, better than expected. Adding to buying sentiment was a forecast-busting earnings report from banking giant Citi.
Eyes are on Wednesday’s Chinese growth data for the first three months of the year at a time of increased fears about the economy.
A survey of 13 economists by AFP saw a median forecast of 7.3 per cent growth in the period, which would mark the fourth slowdown in the past five quarters, putting China on track for its worst annual performance since 1990.
“The expectations… aren’t great but the market’s response may actually be positive if sentiment grows positive on the roll out of reform measures,” Hongyuan Securities analyst Tang Yonggang told Dow Jones Newswires.
“Of course such reforms wouldn’t be big ones at the central government level but perhaps stimulus at the local government level.”
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing tumbled 5.27 per cent to $HK141.9 after surging last week on news of a two-way stock trading deal with the Shanghai market.
Internet giant Tencent fell 1.90 per cent to $HK516.0, China Mobile slipped 1.96 per cent to $HK72.45 and Cathay Pacific Airways slipped 1.30 per cent to $HK15.20.
HSBC was down 0.62 per cent at $HK79.85 while Henderson Land Development shed 1.17 per cent to $HK46.55.
In China the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index dropped 1.40 per cent, or 29.94 points, to 2,101.60 on turnover of 91.1 billion yuan ($A15.55 billion).
The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China’s second exchange, fell 0.77 per cent, or 8.45 points, to 1,085.96 on turnover of 97.2 billion yuan.
Dealers are also awaiting the release of data on industrial production and fixed asset investment, with hopes for signs of improvement after a slow start to the year.
Zheshang Securities analyst Zhang Yanbin said: “The Shanghai index is seeing resistance around the 2,125 level which is the one-year average level.
“Expectations for economic growth are not that great, although to some extent this has already been priced into the market.”
The central bank’s decision to mop up 172 billion yuan of liquidity from the interbank market also hurt sentiment.
Sinolink Securities lost 4.03 per cent to 20.74 yuan, Industrial Bank dropped 3.01 per cent to 9.98 yuan and New China Life Insurance fell 2.46 per cent to 20.63 yuan.
Huayuan Property eased 4.01 per cent to 3.35 yuan while Poly Real Estate retreated 3.47 per cent to 7.79 yuan.