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2021-07-20 HKT 17:29
Shares in Hong Kong retreated for a second day on Tuesday, after the Dow on Wall Street suffered its worst drop since October amid worries about the economic impact of the spread of a more contagious Covid variant.
The Hang Seng Index began 93 points lower and, despite a couple of jumps into the black during early trade, could not sustain the positive momentum.
The local benchmark came under further selling pressure before noon and finished the day down 230 points, or 0.8 percent, at 27,259.
Market turnover was HK$139.5 billion.
Oil majors underperformed despite prices of the commodity stabilising after dropping below US$70 in the previous session.
PetroChina sank 3.6 percent, Sinopec declined 2.7 percent, and CNOOC gave up 1.8 percent.
Gaming stocks were under pressure after new data showed that visitor arrivals to Macau fell in June because of tighter, pandemic-induced border controls between Guangdong and the SAR.
Galaxy Entertainment slid 3.2 percent, and Sands China retreated 2.8 percent.
The biggest blue-chip loser was Alibaba Health Information Technology, which plunged 7.4 percent.
Shares of China Evergrande extended losses to close down 10 percent.
The debt-laden developer had dropped as much as 16 percent the day before, recouping some of the losses after the city government in Shaoyang lifted its ban on pre-sales and online transactions for two projects by developer.
Markets across the border were mixed.
The Shanghai Composite Index and the blue-chip CSI300 index each fell just under 0.1 percent. But the Shenzhen Composite inched up by the same amount.
In Japan, the Nikkei slipped 0.7 percent after hitting a six-month low and South Korea's Kospi lost 0.4 percent. Singapore also slipped 1.3 percent, as the city-state announced stricter social distancing measures to tackle rising coronavirus infections. Taiwan trimmed 1.5 percent and Australia shed 0.5 percent.