Sun, Mar 10, 2019 - Page 14 News List

China’s fall sends Asian stocks to year’s worst loss


Stock markets across Asia sank on Friday as concerns surrounding global growth mounted, with the region’s benchmark index posting its biggest plunge of the year.

Chinese shares fell the most as traders took a sell rating from the nation’s largest brokerage as a sign that the Chinese government wants to slow down the rally.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped 1.4 percent as China’s trade slumped amid continued uncertainty from the US-China trade spat, with exports falling and imports weakening last month.

The index fell 1.9 this week.

With the first back-to-back losses of the year for the Asian benchmark, the region’s equities erased US$384 billion in 10 trading days.

The worries were exacerbated as the People’s Insurance Company (Group) of China Ltd (中國人民保險集團), which had become a poster child of the ramp-up in equities, saw its A shares dive by the 10 percent daily limit.

Citic Securities Co (中信證券) advised clients to sell the shares, saying they are “significantly overvalued” and could decline more than 50 percent over the next year.

The Shanghai Composite Index nosedived 4.4 percent, the most since Oct. 11 last year.

“What we have today is the pressure from the cycle,” Min Lan Tan, head of the chief investment office for the Asia-Pacific with UBS Group AG’s wealth management unit, said in an interview with Bloomberg Television.

In Taipei, the TAIEX fell 0.68 percent to 10,241.75 points, down 1.4 percent from Wednesday last week.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index lost 1.9 percent on Friday.

Japan’s TOPIX fell 1.8 percent and Nikkei 225 lost 2 percent.

South Korea’s KOSPI fell 1.3 percent and KOSPI 200 lost 1.4 percent.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 slid 1 percent, while New Zealand’s S&P/NZX 50 was little changed.

India’s S&P BSE SENSEX slipped 0.1 percent and NSE NIFTY 50 fell 0.2 percent.

Singapore’s Straits Times Index lost 1 percent and Malaysia’s KLCI fell 0.4 percent.

The Philippine Stock Exchange Index dropped 1.1 percent and the Jakarta Composite fell 1.2 percent.

Thailand’s SET slipped 0.2 percent and Vietnam’s VN Index fell 0.9 percent.

Additional reporting by CNA and Reuters

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