Asian Stocks Fall as Sharp, Raw-Material Shares DeclineAdam Haigh
Asian stocks fell, dragging the regional benchmark equities index lower for a second day, as raw-material companies and Australian banks declined. Sharp Corp. slumped in Tokyo.
Sharp tumbled 8.7 percent after the supplier of displays for Apple Inc.’s iPhone and iPad said it’s considering ways to increase capital. Rio Tinto Ltd. lost 1.3 percent in Sydney as mining companies fell, while Commonwealth Bank of Australia retreated 1.1 percent. Chongqing Changan Automobile Co. soared 10 percent in Shanghai on its profit forecast.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index lost 0.4 percent to 137.36 as of 5:35 p.m. in Hong Kong, with about five stocks falling for every three that rose. It declined 1 percent last week. Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index slipped 0.3 percent, indicating the U.S. equities benchmark may extend last week’s biggest slide since June 2012 in which the gauge erased its gains for the year.
“Our view remains that a 10 to 15 percent correction in shares is to be expected at some point along the way this year,” said Shane Oliver, who helps oversee about $130 billion as Sydney-based head of investment strategy at AMP Capital Investors Ltd. “But it would be just a correction in a still rising trend. Any such dip should be seen as a buying opportunity.”
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index and the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland shares listed in the city both gained 0.2 percent. Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.5 percent, and Taiwan’s Taiex Index slid 0.6 percent.
The Shanghai Composite Index rose less than 0.1 percent. Chongqing Changan Automobile jumped by the 10 percent daily limit after the company said first-quarter net income may have risen by as much as 274 percent.
Indicators suggesting China’s economy expanded in the first quarter at the slowest pace since 2009 have spurred speculation the People’s Bank of China will cut lenders’ reserve requirements for the first time in almost two years. PBOC Governor Zhou Xiaochuan said officials “don’t have to roll out significant policies” when growth is within normal ranges.
Japan’s Topix index slipped 0.1 percent, extending losses after capping its worst week since June. The gauge fell 13 percent this year though last week, the biggest decline among 24 developed markets tracked by Bloomberg. Sharp lost 8.7 percent to 273 yen today.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index retreated 1.3 percent today, with Rio Tinto declining 1.3 percent to A$63.26. Commonwealth Bank slid 1.1 percent to A$76.51 and Westpac Banking Corp. retreated 1.5 percent to A$34.15. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index fell 0.6 percent, while South Korea’s Kospi index was little changed.
Citigroup Inc. is due to report earnings today after JPMorgan Chase & Co. declined 7.5 percent in the week through April 11, the most since May 2012, as profit declined. The Nasdaq Composite Index last week capped its worst week since 2012 amid concern valuations have climbed too high as earnings season starts.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index traded at 11.9 times estimated earnings, compared with 15.5 for the S&P 500 and 14.3 for the Stoxx Europe 600 Index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Nippon Meat Packers Inc. gained 1.3 percent to 1,674 yen in Tokyo as UBS AG lifted its recommendation to buy from neutral on the ham and sausage maker.
Toyota Motor Corp., which sank 8.3 percent last week, rebounded 1.8 percent today to 5,410 yen after Mizuho Financial Group Inc. said valuations are “relatively cheap.”