Published this morning by IHS, August private company activity dropped again to 40.8, from 43.8 on July – well below the 50-level suggesting contraction. Not entirely surprising considering the demonstrations that have been going on for months, but caused mainly by a big drop in new orders from mainland China. This afternoon in Hong Kong rumours are swirling that Chief Executive Carrie Lam is considering formally withdrawing the very controversial extradition bill; the Hang Seng index soared by around 3 per cent.
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