Government Policy

Asian markets track Wall St plunge following weak US data

HONG KONG Asian markets sank Wednesday and the

dollar struggled to bounce back following a worse-than-expected reading on US

factory activity that revived worries about the impact of the trade war on

the global economy.

Adding to the selling pressure in Hong Kong were long-running concerns

about the impact of increasingly violent pro-democracy protests in the city

that saw a demonstrator shot and wounded by police on Tuesday.

Regional investors took their lead from Wall Street, where equities tanked

in response to news that an index of US manufacturing activity fell last

month to its lowest point since June 2009.

The data pointed to the impact of the China-US trade war on the world's

top economy and will likely put pressure on Donald Trump to push through an

agreement. Top level talks are planned for this month.

Manufacturing is thought to be the specific chunk of the economy the

president must protect and the sector the US aggressive trade policies

were supposed to enhance, said Stephen Innes, Asia-Pacific market analyst at


So, the data could also imply not only monetary policy infusion is on the

way but could increase the odds of some type of trade war detente.

The figures combined with a weak eurozone inflation reading and a

contraction in Britain's economy in the second quarter.

Tokyo ended the morning session 0.7 percent lower, Sydney fell 1.3 percent

and Singapore lost 0.8 percent, with Taipei, Wellington and Manila also


Johnson's new offer

Seoul shed more than one percent after North Korea fired two missiles into

the sea just a day after Pyongyang said it would resume stalled nuclear talks

this week.

Hong Kong dropped one percent as investors returned from a public holiday

to mark China's National Day but which saw some of the worst violence in the

city since protests began in June.

A teenager was shot in the chest by a policeman, fuelling fears of a

worsening of the unrest that has crippled the city's economy.

On currency markets the dollar was unable to make headway after dropping

Tuesday following the US factory data, which led to speculation the Federal

Reserve will cut interest rates again this month.

However, it was holding its own against the pound as Prime Minister Boris

Johnson prepares to submit his final offer for a new Brexit deal later in the

day, warning that if the EU turns it down Britain would leave the bloc this

month with no divorce deal.

Dealers are also awaiting the release Friday of US jobs data, which could

give an idea about the Fed's rate plans, while the corporate earning season

is also about to get underway.

For the month of October I think we are going to continue to see there is

no shortage of headwinds for what is going on in the environment in terms of

risk to economic growth and global growth, Terri Spath, chief investment

officer at Sierra Investment Management, told Bloomberg TV. There will be a

lot more attention paid to that.

Key figures around 0230 GMT

Tokyo Nikkei 225: DOWN 0.7 percent at 21,742.70 (break)

Hong Kong Hang Seng: DOWN 1.0 percent at 25,842.77

Shanghai Composite: Closed for a public holiday

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.0939 from $1.0935 at 2045 GMT

Pound/dollar: DOWN at $1.2292 from $1.2300

Dollar/yen: UP at 107.73 yen from 107.69 yen

West Texas Intermediate: UP 61 cents at $54.23 per barrel

Brent North Sea crude: UP 52 cents at $59.41 per barrel

New York Dow: DOWN 1.3 percent at 26,573.04 (close)

London FTSE 100: DOWN 0.7 percent at 7,360.32 (close)

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)