Hong Kong and China stocks kicked off the week on a mixed note Monday, trading flat to slightly lower following a sluggish performance on US markets Friday, where stocks ended mostly

lower as oil prices stabilised.

The Hang Seng Index was at 19,358.80 in the early going, down 0.03 per cent or 5.35 points while the Hang Seng China Enterprises index shed 0.10 per cent or 7.84 points to 8,026.46.

The Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.45 per cent or 12.38 points to 2,754.83 and the CSI 300 — which tracks the large caps listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen — decreased 0.33 per cent or 9.79 points to 2,938.24.

The Shenzhen Composite Index lost 0.66 per cent or 11.48 points to 1,725.05 while the Nasdaq style ChiNext shed 0.85 per cent or 17.08 points to 1,997.84.

The People’s Bank of China this morning set the yuan reference rate against the US dollar at 6.5452, 114 basis points weaker than its setting on Friday.

US stocks ended mixed to loser on Friday, beginning the session on an upbeat note after the Commerce Department released data showing that the US economy grew 1 per cent in the fourth quarter, faster than the previous rate of 0.7 per cent reported earlier.

Two of the three major US indices closed in negative territory on Friday with the Dow Jones Industrial Average finishing 0.34 per cent or 57.32 points lower at 16,639.97 and the S&P 500 easing 0.19 per cent or 3.65 points at 1,948.05. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite finished up 0.18 per cent or 8.27 points at 4,590.47.

In Asian trading on Monday morning, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 rose 0.69 per cent or 112.43 points to 16,300.84.

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