(Bloomberg) -- Sentiment among Hong Kong’s small- and medium-sized businesses continues to deteriorate, hitting fresh lows in August as anti-government protests raged in the streets driving tourists away from key retail, restaurant and hospitality industries. Indexes tracking business receipts in retail trade and across all sectors dropped further below the 50 level which separates favorable and unfavorable conditions, according to the latest data from Hong Kong’s Census and Statistics Department dating back to 2011. Visitor arrivals plunged about 40% in August, according to Financial Secretary Paul Chan, the worst year-on-year change since the 2003 SARS crisis.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eric Lam in Hong Kong at elam87@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Christopher Anstey at canstey@bloomberg.net, Jeffrey Black, Matt Turner

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