Losses on Wall Street ripple through Asia as stocks slump

Investors are wary of possible further us interest rate hikes, which will raise the cost of corporate borrowing and weigh on economic growth.

A man walks past an electronic board showing Hong Kong share index outside a bank In Hong Kong, Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018.

Investors are wary of possible further United States interest rate hikes, which will raise the cost of corporate borrowing and could drag on economic growth.

The Nikkei index in Tokyo fell more than 3% at the opening of trade, while in Sydney the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down nearly 2%, slipping below the 6,000-point mark for the first time since early June.

"This meltdown isn't just a mild case of the sniffles, suggesting the latest sneeze from the US equity market could morph into a global markets pandemic", he added.

"The U.S. market sell-off last night spooked sentiment and rekindled memories of similar trading sessions at the beginning of this year", Medha Samant, investment director for Asian equities at Fidelity International, wrote in a note on Thursday morning, according to the Financial Times.

The blood letting was bad enough to attract the attention of US President Donald Trump, who pointed an accusing finger at the Fed for raising interest rates. "It's so tight. I think the Fed has gone insane", he told the media after arriving for a campaign rally ahead of the USA mid-term elections. -Chinese tariff fight over Beijing's technology policy.

A US-led trade war against China has also made investors anxious about the outlook for global growth.

There were more signs of tension in the China-U.S. economic relationship. -China tensions, the Justice Department announced Wednesday it arrested an official of China's Ministry of State Security on charges of trying to steal trade secrets from USA aerospace companies.

Tokyo's Nikkei 225 gave up 3.9 percent to 22,590.86 and the Shanghai Composite lost 5.6 percent to 2,573.11. The Kospi in South Korea fell 4.4 percent to 2,129.67. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 slipped 2.4 percent to 5,906.00.

India defies USA , buying Iranian oil despite sanctions
Saudi Arabia had previously claimed it had successfully replaced Iranian crude oil supplies lost through U.S. sanctions. India is the world's third-largest oil importer, and Iran's second-biggest oil customer after China.

The Dow Jones industrial average dropped more than 800 points in trading on Wednesday, one of the worst sell-offs since February as traders rushed to sell stocks that have been driving the us economy.

Every S&P 500 sector fell heavily, with big-name technology stocks like Facebook and Apple among the biggest drags on the USA market.

Asian stocks slumped in early trade as concerns about higher U.S. interest rates and a global trade war prompted investors to sell risk globally. The Nasdaq composite, which has a large contingent of technology stocks, was 4.1% lower at 7,422.05.

Shanghai shares dropped 4.3 percent, on track for their worst day since February 2016, to their lowest level since late 2014, while China blue chips slid 4 percent.

The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks shed 2.9%, to 1,575.41.

Apple and Amazon, the two most valuable companies in the S&P 500, each had their worst day in 2½ years. Apple slipped by 4.6% while Amazon lost 6.2%. Amazon has soared 50 percent this year, but its stock has fallen 14 percent from its all-time high in early September.

"The valuation of US stocks, especially tech stocks, is still pretty high and there could be some profit taking actions now", Tan explained.

The dollar slipped to 112.17 Japanese yen from 112.27 yen late on Wednesday. The big four banks were between 1.9 and 1.33% lower, with ANZ leading the quartet down.

USA crude was off 52 cents at US$72.65 in Asia, while Brent crude had yet to trade after falling 2.3 per cent overnight to end at US$83.09 a barrel.

"It's a bit of a bloodbath", Ed Campbell, a senior portfolio manager at QMA, the asset management branch of Prudential Financial, in NY, said. Brent crude, the worldwide standard, dropped 1.58 dollarsssss to 81.51 dollars a barrel.

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