Economic Data and Evergrande Non-Payment Beat Down Chinese Stocks

Chinese stocks took a beating, as the country’s economic slowdown and news that a major property developer will miss interest payment added to investor fears that more regulatory crackdown is in the pipeline.

The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index, which tracks Hong Kong-listed Chinese shares, dropped as much as 1.9%, taking declines to a third day. Country Garden Holdings Co. was the worst performer, as property developers extended losses after reports that mainland authorities have told major lenders to China Evergrande Group not to expect interest payments due next week.

Shares of e-commerce companies also slid after China reported weaker-than-expected retail sales figures for August with consumers turning wary amid the Covid outbreak.

The Hang Seng Tech Index, which includes mostly Chinese internet firms, fell as much as 3.2%. Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., Tencent Holdings Ltd., and Meituan contributed most to the losses.

Meanwhile, casino stocks traded in Hong Kong slumped after Macau laid out plans to step up scrutiny of operators and increase local ownership, signaling tighter control over the world’s largest gambling hub. A Bloomberg gauge tracking casino shares slumped as much as 21%, its biggest on record.