Asian stocks tumble on Wall Street decline, economic worries

November 13th, 2008 - 4:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Tokyo, Nov 13 (DPA) Asian stock markets were in a downward spiral Thursday, tracking overnight losses on Wall Street and falling on persistent worries over a US recession.The Tokyo stock market extended its losing streak with the Nikkei 225 Stock Average falling 456.87 points, or 5.25 percent, to close at 8,238.64, a two-week low.

The broader Topix index of all first-section issues was also down 4.31 percent at 837.53.

Exporters’ shares were also hurt by a stronger yen, which reduces Japanese firms’ earnings overseas.

Hong Kong shares opened more than six percent lower, taking their cue from heavy overnight losses on Wall Street.

The blue-chip Hang Seng Index fell 888.41 points, or 6.37 percent, in the first 10 minutes of trading to leave it hovering just above the 13,000 barrier at 13,050.68 at midday.

Analysts blamed the Hong Kong losses on deepening pessimism over global economic prospects combined with growing fears over the prospects for Hong Kong-listed China companies.

The Taiwan stock market plunged nearly four percent with the benchmark Taiex diving more than 5 per cent by mid-session but recovering slightly in later trading and closing at 4,437.83, down
177.74 points, or 3.85 percent.

Fears of the country falling into recession also dragged Australian stocks down 5.8 percent.

The ASX 200 gave up 230 points to close at 3,697.

The resources sector was hit hard because of concerns that these Australian companies would suffer as commodity prices fall.

Overnight in New York, the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 4.73 per cent to 8,282.66 while the broader Standard and Poor’s 500 Index hit a near-five-year low, down 5.19 percent at 852.3. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index fell 5.17 percent.

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