November 07, 2011 at 12:00 PM EST
Asia fall as exporters weaken
Monday, November 07, 2011 Asia fall as exporters weaken Asia markets ended mostly lower Monday, with export firms among the notable decliners, as Greece moved to name a new leader after Prime Minister George Papandreou agreed to step down. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index docked 34.31 points, or 0.4%, to 8,767.09 In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index declined 164.90 points, or 0.8%, to 19,677.90 Debt-stricken Europe maintained its domination of the markets’ attention, with reports that Papandreou will stand down after an aborted plan to hold a national referendum on a European bailout package. Greece’s main political parties agreed on Sunday night to form a new national unity government that will see Papandreou cede power to a new leader, expected to be named on Monday. The first task of Greece’s new coalition government will be to win parliamentary approval of the debt-bailout package put together by European leaders in October. International pressure over the handling of the Italian economy and its debt problems mounted over the weekend, putting the stability of the government and the future of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi in doubt. Many major exporters traded lower in Tokyo trading, with Nissan Motor Co. losing 1.6%, Fujifilm Holdings Corp. down 1.4%, and brewer Kirin Holdings Co. losing 3.5% after cutting its full-year profit estimates. Some of the losses among Japanese technology exporters followed major gains Friday, with Toshiba Corp. and NEC Corp. each falling 1.7%, and Elpida Memory Inc. dropping 3.9%. Some Korean tech names also lost ground, with Samsung Electronics Co. giving up 1.2%, and Hynix Semiconductor Inc. down 3%, though LG Display Co. rose 3.7% as Hyundai Securities said flat-panel makers’ earnings should improve from the current quarter onward. Tokyo-listed shares of Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. shed 2.3% after the company posted a fall in first-half net profit, with disappointing sales for its Actos diabetes drug. Rival pharma firm Daiichi Sankyo Co. lost 2.4%. Elsewhere in Hong Kong, shares of energy major Cnooc Ltd. dropped 2.2% after news that a deal for one of its joint ventures to buy a 60% stake in an Argentinean oil producer from BP PLC had fallen apart. Resource firms suffered in the Sydney session, with index heavyweight BHP Billiton Ltd. down 0.7%, Rio Tinto Ltd. off by 1.7%, and Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. down 3.9%. On the positive side, shares of Tingyi Cayman Islands Holding Corp. closed 9.4% higher after saying Friday its joint venture with Asahi Group Holdings Ltd. has entered a partnership with PepsiCo Inc. which includes the acquisition of Pepsi’s Chinese bottlers CHINA Mainland Chinese property plays suffered in Hong Kong trading after Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao affirmed the government’s intention to drive down property prices Shanghai’s CSI 300 index lost 27.50 points, or 1%, to 2,763.25 China Resources Land Ltd. lost 2.4%, Agile Property Holdings Ltd. fell 3.6%, and China Overseas Land & Investment Ltd. surrendered 4.8%. In other markets; Markets in Singapore had the day off Taiwan’s Taiex Index poked ahead 18.49 points, or 0.2%, to 7,621.72 Korea’s Kospi Index doffed 9.31 points, or 0.5%, to 1,919.10 New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index tacked on 10.40 points, or 0.3%, to 3,342.19 Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index erased 7.70 points, or 0.2%, to 4,273.40
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