Hong Kong (AFP) – Asian markets witnessed fresh volatility Tuesday, a day after a global rout that saw trading suspended in Chinese markets, and US and European equities tank.
In echoes of the summer’s turbulence that saw trillions wiped off valuations, most bourses in the region tumbled in the first few minutes before bouncing into positive territory.
The selling on Monday was fuelled by gauges of Chinese factory activity contracting again in December, the latest evidence showing the world’s number-two economy continues to struggle.
The data — combined with the looming expiration of measures brought in to curb last year’s share slump — sent Shanghai stocks crashing almost seven percent.
On Tuesday Shanghai fell a further three percent at the open but bounced soon after to sit 0.3 percent higher by 0200 GMT. Hong Kong was 0.4 percent higher, having lost 0.2 percent in the first few minutes, and Tokyo added 0.3 percent — reversing an initial 0.3 percent fall.
Monday’s disappointing manufacturing figures were followed later in the day by data suggesting US factory activity had also contracted last month.
“Economic indicators in both China and the US are weak. As they’re the world’s two biggest economies and the impact is huge, each new data point is keeping stock markets in suspense,” Toshihiko Matsuno, chief strategist at SMBC Friend Securities, told Bloomberg News.
“But monetary policy is still accommodating and once markets calm down we’ll see money flow into risk assets again.”
– Key figures around 0200 GMT –
Tokyo – Nikkei 225: UP 0.3 percent at 18,501.13
Shanghai – composite: UP 0.5 percent at 3,311.68
Hong Kong – Hang Seng: UP 0.4 percent at 21,407.48
Euro/dollar: DOWN to $1.0825 from $1.0833 Monday
Dollar/yen: DOWN to 119.54 yen from 119.42 yen
New York – Dow: DOWN 1.6 percent at 17,148.94 (close)
London – FTSE 100: DOWN 2.4 percent at 6,093.43 (close)
Paris – CAC 40: DOWN 2.5 percent at 4,522.45 (close)
Frankfurt – DAX 30: DOWN 4.3 percent at 10,283.44 (close)