Asian stock indexes drop

7 December, 2017

Equity indexes in Asia were mainly lower in late hours on Wednesday, as investors’ sentiment was affected by a weak close on Wall Street and as Australia missed its Q3 GDP estimation.

The Australian economy expanded by 0.6 percent in the three months leading to September, down from an initially forecasted 0.7 percent build. On yearly basis, the growth rate stood at 2.8 percent, also below an expected 3.0 percent.

In the previous session, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) announced its decision to keep steady its cash rate at a record low of 1.5 percent. Central bank analysts noted that the country’s economy is likely to expand at nearly a 3 percent rate in the next few years.

On the corporate front, Samsung Heavy Industries stocks dropped 28 percent with news agency Reuters saying the company is expected to fill an operating loss of $220 million next year.

Overnight, Wall Street was marked by a red close as technology stocks were unable to sustain optimism among investors as speculation over Trump’s tax reform bill continued to weigh.

The Dow Jones industrial average ended 109.41 points lower at 24,180.64, while the S&P 500 took a 0.4 percent hit to finish at 2,629.57. The Nasdaq was down 0.2 percent at 6,762.21.

The ISM non-manufacturing PMI fell short on expectations at 57.4 in November from a predicted 59.0 reading and a prior month 60.1.

In other news, the Commerce Department said the trade deficit expanded in October from $44.90 billion to $48.70 billion, above an estimated growth to $47.50 billion.

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