Asian shares dip with corporate action in Hong Kong in focus


Shutterstock photo - - Asian shares dipped on Thursday with corportae action in Hong Kong catching investor interest.

In Hong Kong, Bank Of China Ltd (3988.HK) suffered its biggest drop since October 2011 after cutting its 2013 final dividend by 33%. Citic Pacific (0267.HK) surged as much as 30.6% this morning, but the gains narrowed as investors are concerned about valuation and financing for a deal to buy its parent CITIC Ltd.

The Hang Seng index dipped 0.47% in the morning while the Shanghai Composite ended down 0.75% and the Nikkei 225 eased 1.16%.

Overnight, U.S. stocks ignored positive U.S. data and fell after President Barack Obama urged Europe not to get complacent over Russia's recent annexation of Crimea.

The Dow 30 fell 0.60%, the S&P 500 fell 0.70%, while the Nasdaq fell 1.43%.

Speaking in Brussels earlier, Obama told allies complacency against Russia could have serious consequences, including stiffer sanctions slapped on Russia if Moscow makes new incursions into Ukraine.

Economic sanctions could threaten Russia with a recession that could drag on the global economy.

Geopolitical concerns eclipsed positive data out of the U.S.

The Commerce Department reported earlier that U.S. durable goods orders rose 2.2% last month, wiping out two months of declines and surpassing expectations for a 1.0% increase.

Core durable goods orders, which exclude transportation items, inched up 0.2%, slightly below forecasts for a 0.3% gain.

After the close of European trade, the DJ Euro Stoxx 50 rose 1.00%, France's CAC 40 rose 0.94%, while Germany's DAX rose 1.18%. Meanwhile, in the U.K. the FTSE 100 rose 0.01%.

On Thursday, the U.S. is to publish final data on fourth-quarter economic growth as well as weekly data on initial jobless claims and private-sector data on pending home sales. offers an extensive set of professional tools for the financial markets.
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This article appears in: Investing , Forex and Currencies

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