HONG KONG (Nikkei Markets) -- Hong Kong shares retreated on Thursday, as investors continued to fret over the spread of a deadly virus in and around China.
The Hang Seng Index lost 1.7% to 27,872.79 by noon, heading for its lowest close since Dec. 24. Mobile services operator China Unicom (Hong Kong) dropped 3.8%, leading percentage losses on the index, after its preliminary profit for 2019 missed estimates. Among heavyweights, internet services company Tencent Holdings and Ping An Insurance Group fell 1.9% and 2.6%, respectively. Shares of airlines were under pressure in Hong Kong, with Air China declining 3.2% and China Southern Airlines down 2.7%.