|HSBC cuts investment outlook for HK
Banking giant HSBC on Monday cut its investment outlook for Hong Kong, saying the planned Occupy Central civil disobedience campaign in the territory could sour relations with the mainland and hurt the city's economy.
It cut its rating on Hong Kong stocks from neutral to underweight on concerns about "negative news flow". But the bank did not elaborate further.
The Occupy Central civil disobedience movement has said it will use peaceful protests to shut down the business district in Central if the government's plans for political reform do not meet international democratic standards.
Hong Kong police arrested over 500 democracy activists who took part in an overnight sit-in on Chater Road in Central following the annual pro-democracy march on July 1. The organizers had said it was a test for the real Occupy Central campaign.
Last month Occupy Central organized an unofficial referendum on political reform. Over 800,000 people took part, and all the options on the ballot paper allowed for the public to nominate candidates in future chief executive elections -- a process known as civil nomination.
Both the central and SAR government say civil nomination is against the Basic Law which states candidates have to be nominated by a broadly-representative nominating committee.
Beijing has described the Occupy Central referendum as a farce. --RTHK