- Hong Kong shares rose Wednesday after Asia''s biggest economy grew faster than expected in the second quarter.

The Hang Seng Index rose 0.2% as China said second quarter GDP rose 7.5%, beating expectations of a 7.4% gain, Industrial output rose 8.8%, while first half retail sales rose 12.1% and fixed-asset investment increased 17.3% in the same period, beating expectations.

The Shanghai Composite Index was flat after the data.

More broadly, stocks across the region were little-moved. South Korea''s KOSPI rose by 0.1%. Australia''s S&P/ASX 200 was fla.

Japan''s Nikkei 225 lost less than 0.1%, ignoring a slightly weaker yen.

In corporate news, Rio Tinto Ltd (ASX:RIO) added 1.1% in Sydney after the miner announced that it has produced record volumes of iron ore in its fiscal first half, after expanding several vast mines in the Australia.

Overnight, U.S. stock indices finished mixed, boosted by bank earnings though watered down by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen''s concerns that stock valuations have grown a little bubbly.

The Dow 30 rose 0.03%, the S&P 500 index fell 0.19%, while the NASDAQ Composite index dropped 0.54%.

Yellen told the Senate Banking Committee that rates are likely to remain on hold for a considerable period after the bank’s quantitative easing program ends, though her observation that small-cap, biotech and other momentum stock valuations appear "stretched" sent stocks falling, leaving investors to conclude that interest rates could rise sooner than later if the labor market improves.

Mixed U.S. data also allowed for a lackluster close.

The Commerce Department reported that U.S. retail sales rose just 0.2% in June, below forecasts for a 0.6% increase. Retail sales for May, however, were revised up to 0.5% from a previously reported 0.3%.

A separate report showed that manufacturing activity in New York state rose to a four-year high this month. The Empire state manufacturing index rose to 25.6 in July from 19.3 in June. Analysts had expected the index to decline to 17.0.

On Wednesday, the U.S. is to release reports on producer price inflation and industrial production. Meanwhile, Yellen is to testify on monetary policy before the House Financial Services Committee.

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