Hong Kong benchmark extends rally

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Hong Kong - Hong Kong's benchmark index rose for a third day on Wednesday, while the index of Chinese companies listed in the city edged down as insurers underperformed.

The Hang Seng Index closed up 0.3 percent at 23,523.28 points.

The China Enterprises Index of the leading offshore Chinese listings in Hong Kong shed 0.1 percent, snapping a four-day winning streak.

China Pacific Insurance Group lost 2.8 percent and China Life Insurance 1.2 percent.

Among the top gainers, China National Building Material climbed 3.2 percent to its highest in three months, after its parent company was picked to participate in a reform process for state-owned firms on Tuesday.

Huaneng Power added 2.9 percent on expectations about strong performance in the sector during the first half.

China Shenhua Energy led losses on the Hang Seng for a second day, off 1.9 percent to its lowest since May 28.

The mainland's biggest coal producer cut its steam coal prices again on Tuesday, according to a Shanghai Securities News report. - Reuters

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