SHANGHAI/HONG KONG, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Hong Kong stocks ended higher on Wednesday, following a slight decline in the number of new coronavirus cases in mainland China and amid hopes of more stimulus to shore up the world’s second-largest economy. ** At the close of trade, the Hang Seng index was up 0.5% at 27,655.81, while the Hang Seng China Enterprises index rose nearly 1%. ** The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares ended 0.3% higher, the IT sector edged 0.5% higher, the financial sector gained 0.2% and the property sector was up 0.6%. ** Investors welcomed news that China will cut some pension contributions and insurance fees to help companies cope with the outbreak, while firms in Hubei were exempted from paying pensions, jobless and work-injury insurance until June.
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