Asian Shares Slide In Thin Trading

(RTTNews) - Asian stocks edged lower on Monday in thin trade with Japan's market closed for a holiday. Investors kept a watchful eye on U.S. fiscal stimulus negotiations, Covid-19 vaccine development and escalating tensions between Washington and Beijing. Worries about the global economic recovery and a surge in novel coronavirus cases across Europe also weighed on markets.

China's Shanghai Composite index fell 0.63 percent to 3,316.93 as the country's central bank kept its benchmark lending rate for corporate and household loans steady for the fifth straight month.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index fell as much as 2.06 percent to 23,950.69. HSBC Holdings shares tumbled 5.3 percent on reports the Asia-focused lender could be a possible candidate for inclusion in China's 'unreliable entity list'.

Seoul shares ended a choppy session lower even as new Covid-19 cases remained below 100 for the second day and data showed the country's exports for the first 20 days of September rose for the first time since March.

The benchmark Kospi dipped 0.95 percent to 2,389.39, with bio and chemical stocks pacing the declines. Samsung Biologics gave up 2.4 percent, Celltrion declined 4.5 percent and LG Chem slumped 5.9 percent.

Australian markets fell notably, dragged down by financials and miners. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 slipped 0.71 percent to 5,822.60, while the broader All Ordinaries index ended down 0.73 percent at 6,013.50.

BHP and Rio Tinto fell over 1 percent while the big four banks ended down between 1.3 percent and 1.5 percent. Gold miners Evolution Mining, Newcrest and Northern Star Resources fell over 2 percent despite an increase in gold prices on Friday.

New Zealand's benchmark NZX-50 index dropped 0.81 percent to 11,539.10 as Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern lifted all coronavirus restrictions across the country, except in Auckland.

With a global recession in progress, investors struggled to find a rationale for buying. Travel software provider Serko lost 4.6 percent on the first day of listing.

U.S. stocks ended lower on Friday as investors fretted over rising coronavirus cases, uncertainty around further stimulus spending and a patchy economic recovery.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 0.9 percent, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite and the S&P 500 shed around 1.1 percent each.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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