By Marketwatch and Associated Press
Asian markets mostly fell Thursday, following losses on Wall Street and turmoil in Hong Kong.
Stocks initially fell sharply in Hong Kong after protesters and police clashed throughout the previous day and night. At least 79 people were injured, Hong Kong officials said. Demonstrators were protesting a potential new extradition law with China, which they fear would erode civil liberties. Crowds of protesters on Wednesday blocked lawmakers from meeting to debate the law. Thursday began quietly, as downtown streets reopened heavy rain fell and discouraged crowds in the former British colony.
But Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI +0.02% recovered from a slide of more than 1.5%, finishing flat. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP +0.05% also finished unchanged. Japan’s Nikkei /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK +0.25% fell 0.5% and South Korea’s Kospi /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 +0.20% slipped 0.3%. Benchmark indexes in Taiwan /zigman2/quotes/210597977/delayed TW:Y9999 +0.04% and Indonesia /zigman2/quotes/210597981/delayed ID:JAKIDX +0.11% were lower, while Singapore /zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed SG:STI +0.80% stocks rose. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO +0.04% finished flat.
Among individual stocks, Japan Display /zigman2/quotes/204799605/delayed JP:6740 -1.69% plunged in Tokyo trading after i ts CEO announced he will step down amid additional restructuring measures. Nintendo /zigman2/quotes/208063194/delayed JP:7974 -0.16% and oil producer Inpex /zigman2/quotes/206689846/delayed JP:1605 +0.91% also fell. In Hong Kong, Tencent /zigman2/quotes/204605823/delayed HK:700 -1.87% and property companies, such as Hang Lung Properties /zigman2/quotes/200230831/delayed HK:101 -0.12% , retreated. Samsung /zigman2/quotes/209800866/delayed KR:005930 +0.80% tumbled in South Korea, and Taiwan Semiconductor /zigman2/quotes/207385621/delayed TW:2330 -1.02% declined in Taiwan. Beach Energy /zigman2/quotes/200513631/delayed AU:BPT -1.70% and Oil Search /zigman2/quotes/204702973/delayed AU:OSH -0.42% sank in Australia.