Hong Kong shares post weekly gains with Friday rise, outperform China

Fri Mar 8, 2013 4:04am EST
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* HSI up 1.4 pct on the day, up 0.9 pct on the week

* CSI300 slips 0.5 pct on Friday, down 2.3 pct this week

* China coal stocks jump on expected flexible pricing contracts

* CNOOC rises after deepsea oil rig resumes operation

By Clement Tan

HONG KONG, March 8 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares rose on Friday, nudging up both indexes for the week, with growth-sensitive counters buoyed by positive U.S. jobless claims ahead of a monthly payrolls report later in the day and more China economic figures over the weekend.

China also boosted market sentiment as the country's exports dramatically exceeded expectations in February, although imports were much weaker than forecast. A flurry of corporate earnings next week will test how the macro-economic recovery in China has improved profitability.

The Hang Seng Index rose 1.4 percent to close at its highest since Feb. 20 at 23,092 points. Friday's gains helped the benchmark rise 0.9 percent on the week and break above chart resistance seen at around 23,000.   Continued...