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Chinese internet stocks in Hong Kong continue to surge amid hopes of easing regulations


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The Chinese and Hong Kong flags flutter as screens display the Hang Seng Index outside the Exchange Square complex, which houses the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, on January 21, 2021 in Hong Kong, China.
Zhang Wei | China News Service via Getty Images

Shares of Chinese internet giants in Hong Kong soared Wednesday, continuing an upward trek that started around a week ago.

On Wednesday afternoon in Hong Kong, shares of Tencent climbed 2.68%, Alibaba surged 7.08% and Meituan jumped 4.44%.

Shares of Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi also saw its stock climb 6.06%, following a Tuesday announcement of plans to repurchase shares in the open market “from time to time” at a maximum aggregate price of 10 billion Hong Kong dollars ($1.28 billion). Xiaomi also announced a 21.4% year-over-year rise in its fourth-quarter revenue.

The Hang Seng Tech index gained 3.23%, though it still sits more than 15% lower year-to-date.

Stocks in Hong Kong have mostly been moving higher since the release of a state media report last Wednesday signaling support for Chinese shares.

In particular, the article said regulators should “complete as soon as possible” the crackdown on internet platform companies.

Announcements of share buybacks by tech firms such as Alibaba and Xiaomi in recent days have also likely buoyed investor sentiment.

JPMorgan Asset Management’s Tai Hui said the Chinese government’s regulatory reforms, particularly on internet companies, have weighed on Chinese stocks.

“The government will have to demonstrate being predictable and transparent when making changes in real life, and this could take time,” said Tai, chief Asia market strategist at the firm. “Financial performance in quarters ahead would help investors to determine how these rule changes impact their long term earnings potential.”

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