Electronic boards display various stock prices at Exchange Square in Hong Kong on March 9, 2020.
(ISAAC LAWRENCE / AFP)
HONG KONG – Hong Kong’s benchmark stock index fell 1.8 percent on Friday to enter a technical bear market on Friday.
The Hang Seng Index took losses from its recent Feb 17 peak to more than 20 percent, extending its weekly loss to 5.8 percent, the worst showing since March 2020. Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Meituan weighed on the gauge Friday.
Investors are still finding it hard to assign a fair value to tech companies whose prospects may be clouded by the potential regulatory probes laying ahead
Investors are still finding it hard to assign a fair value to tech companies whose prospects may be clouded by the potential regulatory probes laying ahead.
READ MORE: Hong Kong stocks jump 3% on strong tech firms
On Friday, legislation setting out tougher rules on use of customer data sparked double-digit declines in stocks such as Ping An Healthcare and Technology Co and Alibaba Health Information Technology Ltd. The Hang Seng Tech Index slumped to a fresh record low.
The biggest pull on the Hang Seng Index this week, internet bellwether Alibaba’s shares hit a record low in Hong Kong this week as Tencent Holdings Ltd warned the industry to prepare for more regulations including substantial changes to how companies use data for advertising.
ALSO READ: Tencent: No interim dividend despite interim profit growth
As the selling intensifies, mainland’s internet firms are disappearing from the list of the world’s 10 largest companies by market value. The Hang Seng Index is now down nearly 9 percent this year, one of the worst performers in Asia.