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Hong Kong stocks rise over 2% as consumer firms rally;…

SHANGHAI, Aug 11 – Hong Kong shares rose the most in more than a month on Tuesday, as investors scooped up consumer stocks reliant on demand from mainland China amid signs of a recovery in the world’s second-largest economy and rising Sino-U.S. tensions.

** By the lunch break, the Hang Seng index was up 2.4% at 24,962.48 points, marking its biggest intraday percentage rise since July 6. The Hong Kong China Enterprises Index firmed 2.3% to 10,217.11.

** Leading the gains, the Hang Seng consumer discretionary index jumped as much as 3.1% to its highest in nearly seven months, with Chinese hot-pot restaurant chain operator Haidilao International Holding surging 11.9% to a record peak.

** “Investors are shifting their focus to consumer players that benefit from China’s robust domestic demand, as they are less impacted by the Sino-U.S. tensions,” said Linus Yip, chief strategist at First Shanghai Group.

** China is looking to reduce its reliance on overseas markets and technology for its economic development, government advisers say, as U.S. hostility and a pandemic increase external risks that could hamper longer-term progress.

** Adding to signs of a recovery in the world’s second-largest economy, data on Monday showed China’s factory deflation eased in July as global oil prices rose and industrial activity climbed back towards pre-coronavirus levels.

** Market participants are relatively confident in China’s economic recovery, which is faster than other major economies, Linus said.

** By the midday break, the Shanghai Composite index firmed 0.33% to 3,390.37 points, while China’s blue-chip CSI300 index was up 0.66%.

** The tech-heavy start-up board ChiNext added 0.2%, while the newly-launched STAR50 eased 1.2%.

** Around the region, MSCI’s Asia ex-Japan stock index was firmer by 1.10%, while Japan’s Nikkei index was up 1.77%.

** The yuan was quoted at 6.95 per U.S. dollar, 0.17% firmer than the previous close of 6.9621.

** As of 0358 GMT, China’s A-shares were trading at a premium of 36.35% over the Hong Kong-listed H-shares. (Reporting by Luoyan Liu and Andrew Galbraith; Editing by Aditya Soni)

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