* SSEC -0.5%, CSI300 -0.51%, HSI -1.19%
* Chine leaves loan prime rate steady at July fixing
* Evergrande shares, bonds continue to slump
SHANGHAI, July 20 (Reuters) - China shares fell on Tuesday
as investors adopted risk-off mode after Beijing kept a
benchmark lending rate unchanged despite growing expectations
for a cut, while developer Evergrande slumped after local
authorities halted some of its sales.
** At the midday break, the Shanghai Composite index was
down 0.5% at 3,521.57 points.
** China's blue-chip CSI300 index was down 0.51%, with
its financial sector sub-index slipping 0.96%.
** Policymakers kept the one-year loan prime rate (LPR)
at 3.85%. The five-year LPR
remained at 4.65%. The rate was unchanged for the 15th straight
month, despite growing expectations for a cut after a surprise
lowering of bank reserve requirements.
** The real-estate index dropped 1.73% as concerns
around Hong Kong-listed China Evergrande Group dented
** Sales in two Evergrande developments in a southern Chinese
city have been halted by the authorities, government notices
showed, adding pressure on the developer's cashflow that has
raised concerns in the past few months.
** Evergrande's shares plunged 14.37% in Hong Kong,
and bond and share prices of related companies also tumbled.
** Chinese H-shares listed in Hong Kong fell 1.47% to
9,811.8, while the Hang Seng Index was down 1.19% at
** The sub-index of the Hang Seng index tracking property firms
fell 1%, energy companies slumped 3.6%, and the
IT sector fell 1.3%.
** The smaller Shenzhen index was down 0.38%, the
start-up board ChiNext Composite index was weaker by
0.21%, and Shanghai's tech-focused STAR50 index was
** Around the region, MSCI's Asia ex-Japan stock index
was weaker by 0.95%, while Japan's Nikkei index
was down 0.96%.
** The yuan was quoted at 6.4881 per U.S. dollar,
0.04% firmer than the previous close of 6.4905.
(Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom, Editing by Sherry