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HONG KONG, Nov 22 AFP

November 22 2012, 8:54PM

Hong Kong shares closed 1.02 per cent higher on Thursday after HSBC said its index of Chinese manufacturing moved into positive territory for the first time in 13 months in November.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index added 218.84 points to end at 21,743.20 on turnover of HK$49.59 billion ($6.40 billion).

Banking giant HSBC said Thursday its preliminary purchasing managers' index (PMI) hit 50.4 this month, up from a final 49.5 in October, after 12 consecutive months in contraction.

Anything above 50 points to growth and anything below indicates contraction.

The news reinforces recent views that the world's number two economy is beginning to pick up from a recent slumber following a slew of upbeat trade, investment and sales figures this month and last.

"This confirms that the economic recovery continues to gain momentum towards the year end," Qu Hongbin, HSBC's chief economist for China, said in the bank's release.

Ping An rebounded 1.0 per cent to HK$58.80 following falls over the past two days after HSBC said it was mulling selling its entire 15.6 per cent stake in China's second-largest insurer.

Property developers performed well with China Resources Land rallying 3.5 per cent to HK$19.64 while Wharf rose 2.1 per cent to HK$55.60.

Chinese shares closed down 0.72 per cent. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index fell 14.71 points to 2,015.61 on turnover of 33.7 billion yuan ($5.4 billion).

"Though the PMI data turned better and reduced worries over the domestic economy, it may take some time for investors to regain their confidence in the stock market," Zheshang Securities analyst Zhang Yanbing told AFP.

Liquor and wine producers extended losses. Tuopai Shede Wine fell 5.56 per cent to 23.78 yuan and Sichuan Swellfun dropped 4.13 per cent to 19.06 yuan.

Shanghai Industrial Development lost 4.81 per cent to 7.13 yuan while China Enterprise declined 3.64 per cent to 4.50 yuan.