By Laura He, MarketWatch
HONG KONG (MarketWatch) — Hong Kong stocks bounced back on Wednesday following two straight sessions of losses, with Chinese banks posting broad gains after the country’s regulator approved first preferred-share issues by banks.
The Hang Seng Index /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI -2.19% ended up 0.4%, with mainland Chinese banks gaining across the board.
Bank of China Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/204682472/delayed HK:3988 -1.01% and Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/200705246/delayed HK:1288 -0.64% rose 1.4% and 0.3% each, after the two state-owned giants announced separately Tuesday night that they’ve received the regulator’s approval to issue the country’s first preferred shares to reduce financial stress.
Their domestic peers were also well bid. China construction Bank Corp. /zigman2/quotes/208974133/delayed HK:939 -2.05% advanced 1.4%, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/201401473/delayed HK:1398 -2.45% added 1.2%, and Bank of Communications Co., Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/203442771/delayed HK:3328 -1.89% tacked on 0.7%.
Meanwhile, several major Chinese developers posted gains, with China Resources Land Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/202417326/delayed HK:1109 -1.72% and China Overseas Land & Investment Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/205731176/delayed HK:688 -0.42% , both Hang Seng constituents, up 0.6% and 0.2%, respectively. Sino-Ocean Land Holdings Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/201858088/delayed HK:3377 +0.51% jumped 3.5%, and China Vanke Co. /zigman2/quotes/203851375/delayed HK:2202 -0.59% , the country’s largest residential developer by sales, improved by 1.6%.
Mobile operators China Telecom Corp. /zigman2/quotes/206668971/delayed HK:728 -1.28% and China Unicom Hong Kong Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/205091392/delayed HK:762 -0.67% moved up 5.2% and 0.3% each, after reports said Apple Inc.’s /zigman2/quotes/202934861/composite AAPL -5.26% iPhone6 has entered the final stage for approval in mainland China. Bigger rival China Mobile Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/200868736/delayed HK:941 -1.04% retreated slightly after previous gains, down 0.2%.
In other Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei Average /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK -0.75% edged down 0.2%, with the yen /zigman2/quotes/210561789/realtime/sampled USDJPY +0.2342% strengthening to ¥108.59 from ¥108.80 in the previous day. The broader Topix index /zigman2/quotes/210598092/delayed JP:180460 -0.45% fell 0.4%.
Elsewhere, Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO -2.54% declined 0.7%, while South Korea’s Kospi Composte Index /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 -0.10% rose 0.3%.