Asian stocks followed U.S. shares lower, with the regional benchmark index heading for a third weekly decline, as energy and material shares slid amid a renewed selloff in commodities.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index fell 0.6 percent to 132.81 as of 9:01 a.m. in Tokyo, poised for a 0.7 percent retreat this week. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index slipped 1.4 percent on Thursday, the most in six weeks, as a rout in commodities pressured oil and raw-materials companies while investors braced for the first rise in interest rates since 2006. Federal Reserve officials stressed that policy should be tightened only gradually, with New York Fed President William C. Dudley saying the conditions for liftoff “could soon be satisfied.”

U.S. crude oil maintained its drop below $42 a barrel and copper futures extended declines after touching a six-year low, spurring a seventh day of weakness in Bloomberg’s commodity gauge.

The odds the Federal Reserve will raise rates at its December meeting have risen to 66 percent. Fed Bank of St. Louis President James Bullard said rates should be raised from near zero because emergency policies are not needed with the labor market and inflation near the central bank’s goals.

Source : Bloomberg