Asian stocks fell, with the regional benchmark index heading for a second day of declines, as the rout in oil spurred a global selloff of risk assets amid deepening concern that global growth is weakening.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped 1.1 percent to 120.47 as of 9:08 a.m. in Tokyo. Oil’s collapse and worries about a China slowdown have continued to roil markets around the world, with the regional gauge sliding 7.8 percent this year through Tuesday. The slump in crude has taken its toll on energy producers, with BP Plc’s fourth-quarter profit tumbling 91 percent and Exxon Mobil Corp. cutting its drilling budget to a 10-year low.
The Bank of Japan surprised markets with a stimulus boost last week, providing relief to turbulent markets around the world. The upturn was short-lived, as anxiety that the drop in oil and wider financial turmoil will impact growth took root. Citigroup’s Economic Surprise Index indicates data in Group of 10 economies is falling short of estimates by the most since May 2013. A gauge of service industries in China is due Wednesday.
Japan’s Topix index dropped 2 percent, heading for its second day of declines. South Korea’s Kospi index lost 0.7 percent. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index slid 1.2 percent. New Zealand’s benchmark gauge retreated 0.6 percent.
Futures on the FTSE China A50 Index fell 0.9 percent in most recent trading, while those for Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index dropped 1.3 percent. Chinese stocks climbed in light trading on Tuesday, led by technology and industrial companies, as the central bank injected cash into the financial system before markets close for holidays next week. The Shanghai Composite Index rose 2.3 percent, paring its decline this year to 22 percent.
Source : Bloomberg