Asian stocks fell, with the regional benchmark index heading for a weekly loss, after Japanese shares declined as the strengthening yen pressured major exporters.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index lost 0.5 percent to 120.53 as of 9:16 a.m. in Tokyo. The measure is poised for a 0.7 percent decline this week as Japan’s Topix index erased its gains from last Friday’s Bank of Japan stimulus and the yen headed for its best weekly gain in seven years.

Japan’s Topix index lost 1.5 percent, heading for a 4.4 percent weekly loss. The index has wiped out a 5.1 percent rally following the Bank of Japan’s stimulus boost. The yen traded at 116.81 per dollar after rising in the past four days.

South Korea’s Kospi index slipped 0.2 percent. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index retreated 0.4 percent. New Zealand’s benchmark gauge declined 0.1 percent.

Futures on the FTSE China A50 Index added 0.2 percent in most recent trading, while those for Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index gained 0.5 percent. China’s Shanghai Composite Index climbed 1.5 percent on Thursday as the central bank stepped up efforts to ease a cash shortage before mainland markets close for the holidays next week.

Source : Bloomberg