Investing.com - Casino stocks in Hong Kong rallied before falling on Friday in Asia, as political unrest in the city overshadowed data that showed visitors to Macau rose nearly 9% on year during Oct. 1-2.
Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd (HK:0027) lost 1%, while Sands China Ltd (HK:1928) dropped 1.1%.
Figures from Macau’s Public Security Police showed that visitor arrivals to Macau during the first two days of the Golden Week holiday were up by 8.8% from the same period in 2018.
Number of mainland visitors in those first two days stood at approximately 257,600, up by 9.6% year-on-year, data showed. The figures sent Hong Kong-listed casino stocks higher initially, with Galaxy up almost 3% while Sands gained as much as 1.8% earlier in the day.
But stocks in Hong Kong turned lower after traders digested reports that the government may ban face masks at public gatherings as a way to deter protesters.
It will be the first time in more than half a century to ban face masks at public gatherings.
Some legal experts pointed out that invoking the emergency law would further polarise society and pave the way for more draconian regulations, as the law gives the city’s leader the authority to “make any regulations whatsoever which he, or she, may consider desirable in the public interest” in case of “emergency of public danger.”