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China's Tencent hits US$200b market cap for first time
[BEIJING] China's Tencent Holdings Ltd for the first time hit a market cap of more than US$200 billion on Monday, making it more valuable than US tech firms like Amazon.com Inc, IBM Corp and Oracle Corp .
The country's biggest social networking and online entertainment firm rose 5.38 per cent to close at HK$170.50 in trading in Hong Kong, giving it a market valuation of US$206 billion. This is higher than Oracle's US$190 billion, Amazon's US$178 billion and IBM's US$161 billion.
Tencent's shares have rocketed 52 per cent from the beginning of this year, bringing its valuation close to those of US peer Facebook Inc's US$230 billion and Chinese arch rival Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's US$210 billion.
The surge in the Shenzhen-based company's share price comes as Hong Kong stocks hit fresh seven-year highs on Monday. China recently allowed mutual funds to buy stocks on the Hang Seng Index under the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect scheme, fuelling the jump in already-rising Tencent shares.
More money is expected to pour in as investors hunt for bargains.
New York-listed Alibaba, the world's largest e-commerce firm, has seen its shares slide 19 per cent year-to-date. This slump owes itself to investor excitement wearing off after the firm's record-setting US$25 billion IPO last September, and a lacklustre set of third-quarter earnings results.
Facebook is up five per cent since the beginning of 2015.