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Global recovery fears hit Asian shares

Global recovery fears hit Asian shares

Fresh fears about the strength of the global recovery led Asian markets back to losing ways yesterday, as weaker-than-expected U.S. data combined with growing fears over sovereign debt.
The region took its cue from Europe and Wall Street, which fell hard overnight on disappointing technology sector results, U.S. employment and manufacturing data, amid growing fears over Greece's debt problems.
The falls overseas eroded Asia's gains from Thursday's rally, when markets were briefly lifted by the Federal Reserve's rosier outlook on the US economy and its indication that low interest rates would continue.
The confirmation of Fed chief Ben Bernanke to a second four-year term did little to improve the mood.
"The wobble in risk appetite seems to hint at resurfacing concern about the durability of the global recovery," Morgan Stanley currency analyst Yilin Nie told Dow Jones Newswires.
Markets have fallen all week, with a little respite Thursday, as dealers grow concerned at the global recovery.
Australian shares slumped to their lowest level in two months, losing 2.22 percent on weak commodities leads driven by ebbing Chinese demand.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index dropped 103.7 points to 4,569.6.
Miner BHP Billiton fell 3.19 percent to 39.40, while Rio Tinto slipped 4.82 percent to 68.00.
In Japan a 1.3 percent drop in consumer prices stoked deflationary concerns, overshadowing signs of recovery in the economy amid a pickup in factory output and a slight fall in unemployment.
Tokyo's Nikkei dived 2.08 percent, or 216.25 points, to 10,198.04.
Troubled automaker Toyota shed 1.96 percent after plunging 14 percent this week on fears the company's profits and vaunted safety record will be tarnished by huge recalls due to accelerator problems.
Hong Kong was off 0.78 percent by the break. Singapore was down 1.03 percent.
Tech-sector worries saw Seoul tumble 2.44 percent, or 40.00 points, to 1,602.43, its lowest since Dec. 2.
Shares in electronics giant Samsung Electronics dived 2.97 percent despite seeing its annual earnings rocket last year to more than US$8 billion thanks to post-crisis demand for flat-screen TVs and higher chip prices.
However, China struck a contrary tone as bargain hunting in banks and property developers saw shares rise 0.79 percent.
In other markets:
Taipei closed down 0.70 percent, or 54.14 points, to 7,640.44.
High tech firms led the downside with flat panel maker AU Optronics closing down 5.66 percent at 35.85 after posting a NT$7.9 billion(US$247 million) net loss for the fourth quarter. Rival Chi Mei Optoelectronics was 1.18 percent lower at NT$25.05.
"Investor sentiment has turned very cautious after the market suffered heavy losses in recent sessions," President Securities analyst Vickie Hsieh said.
"Until Wall Street stabilizes, the local bourse will remain volatile," she said.
Manila fell 0.28 percent, or 8.44 points, to 2,953.19.
Ayala Corp. and its flagship Ayala Land led decliners, dropping 1.69 percent to 290 pesos and 2.33 percent to 10.50 pesos, respectively.
Philippine Long Distance Telephone rose 0.56 percent to 2,670 pesos.


Updated : 2020-12-02 05:50 GMT+08:00