Hong Kong stocks went up 296.39 points, or 1.11 percent to close at 27,029.26 Wednesday after a volatile session, but turnover was light, indicating overall market sentiments were still cautious.
The blue chip Hang Seng Index opened up 147.22 points, or 0.55 percent, at 26,880.09 and once dipped into negative ground at 26, 670.85 before closing higher at 27,029.26.
The benchmark index fluctuated between 27,714.65 and 26,670.85 on a turnover of 82.32 billion HK dollars (10.56 billion U.S. dollars), much lower than Tuesday's 103.43 billion HK dollars (13. 28 billion U.S. dollars), which analysts said indicated cautious sentiments.
Analysts further said uncertainties were ahead for the blue chip Hang Seng Index but chances were better at upside, with the 29,000 mark likely to be tried before the year end due to window dressing.
Thirty-six out of the 43 blue chip stocks were gainers, with China Mobile, the mainland mobile carrier, gaining 2.1 HK dollars, or 1.58 percent, at 135.4 HK dollars.
Most Hong Kong-based banks and property firms outperformed the market, partly thanks to robust economic outlook in the special administrative region in south China.
Unemployment rate in Hong Kong dropped to its lowest in nine years and a half, according to statistics released Tuesday by the Hong Kong SAR government.
Cheung Kong, the property conglomerate, went up 3 HK dollars at 133.9 HK dollars and Henderson Land gained 2.25 HK dollars at 67. 85 HK dollars, joined by other shares like SHK Properties, New World Development and Hang Lung Properties in the gainer league.
The properties sub-index went up 792.34 points, or 2.3 percent, at 35,201.62.
The finance category edged up 74.84 points at 38,907.67, but the heavy-weighted HSBC turned out one of the seven blue chip losers, going down 0.9 HK dollars at 130.9 HK dollars while its unit Hang Seng Bank added 4.8 HK dollars at 150.5 HK dollars.
Bank of East Asia gained 0.6 HK dollars to close at 48.9 HK dollars.
ICBC added 0.04 HK dollars at 5.54 HK dollars and Bank of China edged up 0.01 at 3.82 HK dollars, while BOC Hong Kong closed up 0.3 HK dollars at 20.45 HK dollars.
China Life was up 0.1 HK dollars at 39.8 HK dollars.
The utilities sub-index gained 474 points, or 1.19 percent, at 40,336.14 while the commerce and industry genre closed at 16,095.21, up 269.14 points or 1.7 percent.
(Xinhua News Agency December 20, 2007)