Asia Trader

Asian Markets Extend Drop on PBoC Statement; Hong Kong Crashes 1.84%

Shares in Asia-Pacific fell on Friday as China left its benchmark lending rate unchanged.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index plunged 1.84% to close at 24,849.72, with Chinese tech shares largely continuing to see another day of heavy losses as regulatory uncertainty surrounding the sector lingers. Shares of Meituan dropped 4.54% while Alibaba fell 2.59% and declined 2.11%. Tencent, on the other hand, rose 1%. The Hang Seng Tech index shed 2.46% to 5,895.06.

Mainland Chinese stocks also closed lower as the Shanghai composite declined 1.1% to 3,427.33 and the Shenzhen component slipped 1.614% to 14,253.53.

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Shanghai Composite Index, technical performance chart.

China’s one-year loan prime rate (LPR) and five-year LPR were both left unchanged at 3.85% and 4.65%, respectively, on Friday. That was in line with the expectations of a majority of traders and analysts in a snap poll, according to Reuters.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan fell 0.98% to close at 27,013.25 while the Topix index shed 0.87% to end the trading day at 1,880.68.

Japanese automaker shares continued to see losses on Friday, with Toyota Motor falling 4.09% while Nissan Motor dropped 7.25% and Honda Motor declined 4.84%.

That came following Toyota’s Thursday announcement that it will slash global production for September by 40% from its previous plan, Reuters reported. Shares of Toyota plunged more than 4% on Thursday after the Nikkei first reported on the firm’s plan.

Elsewhere, South Korea’s Kospi declined 1.2% while the S&P/ASX 200 in Australia closed fractionally lower at 7,460.90.

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S&P/ASX 200, technical performance chart.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 1.15%.

Overnight stateside, the S&P 500 gained about 0.13% to 4,405.80 while the Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.11% to 14,541.79. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lagged, slipping 66.57 points to 34,894.12.

Asian Markets Currencies & Oil

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 93.587 following its climb earlier this week from below 93.

The Japanese yen traded at 109.62 per dollar, stronger than levels above 110 seen against the greenback yesterday. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7115, having declined from above $0.728 earlier in the week.

Oil prices were lower in the afternoon of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures down 0.27% to $66.27 per barrel. U.S. crude futures declined about 0.1% to $63.61 per barrel.


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