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Hang Seng facing short-term pressure

Hong Kong police are scheduled today to clear the last occupation site in the pro-democracy protests, ending more than two months of road blockades in the city.

Hong Kong buiness district
Source: Bloomberg

If all proceeds without incident, this could potentially help lift market sentiment to some extent.

However, investors are likely to keep a closer eye on the China macro data due out this week for leads.

Tomorrow 9:45am (Singapore time), HSBC China manufacturing PMI figures will be released.

The consensus forecast is for the reading to slip into contraction territory of 49.8 from 50.0. A reading that is in line with this or worse is likely to weigh on sentiment.

Another closely watched indicator will be the property price index, which has slipped into negative territory for two-straight months. A further drop could prompt some jitters among investors, who will be hoping to see China’s property sector show some signs of stabilising.

Amid renewed pressure on oil prices, Hong Kong consumer discretionary stocks were the best performer on Friday. They offset some of the losses on the wider Hang Seng Index, which fell 0.27% to 23249.2.

Ahead of the Hong Kong open

The Hang Seng Index is below both its 20 and 50 daily moving averages (DMA), and broke below its 200 DMA last week. This suggests a downwards bias in the short term, where it is likely to test a support level at around 22,800 points.

The current resistance level is around 23,500 points, which the HSI will need to break above to get any momentum for a climb to test the 24,000 point mark again.

We are calling for the Hang Seng Index to open lower by 1.2% at 22,953.7 points.

Hang Seng
Click to enlarge

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