Markets in Hong Kong and Taiwan fall more than 2% as Asia tech stocks slide – awsforwp

SINGAPORE – Shares in Asia-Pacific were lower in Thursday trade as tech stocks sold off following overnight losses on Wall Street – after data showed the consumer price index stateside in April remaining near the highest level in more than 40 years.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Tech index traded 3.96% lower. Shares of Alibaba dropped more than 6% while Meituan shed 3.78%. also saw its Hong Kong-listed stock plunge 8.79%.

Technology stocks in Taiwan also saw losses, with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company shares sliding 3.07% while Pegatron fell 1.17%.

Shares of Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group plummeted 8.03%. Over in South Korea, Cocoa shares slipped 5.87% while Krafton shed 2.33%.

In the broader markets, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index fell 2.25% in afternoon trade while the Taiex in Taiwan declined 2.43%.

Mainland Chinese stocks shed earlier gains, with the Shanghai Composite down 0.54% and the Shenzhen Component falling 0.519%.

“We’re not very … pessimistic on China equities at this point,” Selina Sia, head of greater China equity research at Credit Suisse Wealth Management, told CNBC’s “Street Signs Asia” on Thursday.

“We have seen that cases in Shanghai have already peaked, and hopefully omicron can come under control sooner rather than later, but we are seeing positive signs there,” said Sia. “Besides, policymakers have made statements after the Politburo meeting at the end of April in order to support infrastructure investment, platform economies and also the property market.”

The Nikkei 225 in Japan fell 1.77% while the Topix index shed 1.19%.

In South Korea, the Kospi slipped 1.57%. Australian stocks also declined as the S & P / ASX 200 dipped 1.82%.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 2.46% lower.

“We think in the equity space, Europe and US face bigger tightening central bank and growth headwinds than arguably Japan and Asia,” said Gareth Nicholson, chief investment officer for international wealth management at Nomura. “Asia has China supporting them, Japan has a very dovish central bank.”

“Also, with the valuation perspective, we think there’s more upside this part of the world in equity than the other side,” Nicholson told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” on Thursday.

The US consumer price index surged 8.3% in April as compared with a year ago – near the highest level in more than 40 years, official data showed Wednesday,. The April reading, which represented a slight ease from March’s peak, was also above the Dow Jones estimate for an 8.1% gain.

Shares on Wall Street dropped following the release of US consumer inflation data. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite lagged as it fell 3.18% to 11,364.24 while the broader S&P 500 shed 1.65% to 3,935.18. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 326.63 points, or 1.02%, to 31,834.11.

Bitcoin falls below $ 27,000

The price of bitcoin fell below $ 27,000, continuing a recent sell-off in the cryptocurrency space against a backdrop of broader risk-off sentiment among investors. As of 1:49 am ET Thursday, bitcoin’s price sat 9.67% lower at $ 26,582.27.

The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 104,082 as it continues to hold above the 103.8 level that it fell below at certain points earlier this week.

The Japanese yen traded at 129.63 per dollar, stronger as compared to levels above 130.5 seen against the greenback earlier this week. The Australian dollar was at $ 0.6883 after a recent decline from levels above $ 0.70.

Oil prices were lower during the afternoon of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures down 1.86% to $ 105.51 per barrel. US crude futures shed 1.96% to $ 103.64 per barrel.

– CNBC’s Jeff Cox contributed to this report.