Tokyo: Asian markets turned negative again on Monday as the fallout from Donald Trump's steel and aluminium tariffs continues to feed concerns of a global trade war.
Equities went into a tailspin last week after the tycoon unveiled his plans for the controversial levies, and while US investors ended Friday on a slightly positive note, there is still the prospect of more volatility to come.
Trump ramped up his rhetoric at the weekend, tweeting that "Our friends and enemies have taken advantage of the US for many years", before adding "Sorry, it's time for a change!"
The move, part of the president's "American First" protectionist drive, was met with fury across the world with officials from Beijing to Brussels raising concerns.
"Uncertainty has lifted materially, folks, as countries react to the tariffs and a trade war and retaliatory measures loom as a real possibility unless President Trump finds a way to step back," said Greg McKenna, chief market strategist at AxiTrader.
Hong Kong led losses, falling more than one percent, while Tokyo finished the morning session 0.7 percent lower.
Shanghai shed 0.2 percent, with eyes on the start of China's annual rubber-stamp parliament, which kicked off its most significant meeting in a generation, preparing to offer Xi Jinping a lifetime mandate to rule the world's number two economy.
Premier Li Keqiang set a 2018 economic growth target at "around 6.5 percent", in line with expectations but lower than the 6.9 percent increase registered last year.
Sydney and Seoul each slipped 0.5 percent while Singapore was off 0.6 percent and Manila gave up 0.8 percent.
The dollar came under further pressure on worries about a trade war, with the safe haven yen extending last week's gains, helped by comments from the head of the Bank of Japan last week suggesting crisis-era stimulus could be scaled back from next year.
Stephen Innes, head of Asia-Pacific trading at OANDA, said: "Trump is carrying the seeds of the dollar's destruction.
"The economic fallout from trade duties would result in a toxic elixir of lower domestic growth and higher inflation, neither of which inspires investors confidence in the dollar."
The euro also got support from news that German Chancellor Angela Merkel would form a new government, ending months of uncertainty in Europe's biggest economy, though Italy was on course for a hung parliament after a weekend general election.
Key figures around 0230 GMT
Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 0.7 percent at 21,043.61 (break)
Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 1.2 percent at 30,231.19
Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.2 percent at 3,248.59
Euro/dollar: UP at $1.2332 from $1.2300 at 2200 GMT on Friday
Pound/dollar: UP at $1.3800 from $1.3792
Dollar/yen: DOWN at 105.54 yen from 105.73 yen
Oil - West Texas Intermediate: UP 40 cents at $61.65 per barrel
Oil - Brent North Sea: UP 42 cents at $64.79 per barrel
New York - DOW: DOWN 0.3 percent at 24,538.06 (close)
London - FTSE 100: DOWN 1.5 percent at 7,069.90 (close) (AFP)
Asian markets rallied on Monday, extending their gains at the end of last week, following another strong US jobs report that reinf…
Shares of Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi fell almost 6 percent in its trading debut in Hong Kong.
The Jakarta Composite Index (JCI) dropped by 0.77 percent or 44.42 points to 5,694.91 on Friday, July 6, 2018.
The Jakarta Composite Index (JCI) dropped by 0.63 percent or 36.05 points to 5,703.28 brefore break on Friday.
The Jakarta Composite Index (JCI) increased by 0.1 percent or 5.69 points to 5,739.33 on Thursday, July 5, 2018.
Selain letaknya tak terlalu jauh dari Indonesia, wisata ke Singapura seru karena banyak tempat yang …
Bila tubuh kekurangan serat, akan terjadi sejumlah masalah bagi kesehatan jangka panjang.
Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati on Thursday urged national and local officials to improve Indonesia's economic fundamen…
The National Logistics Agency (Bulog) has confirmed that its rice stock is enough to fulfill the domestic consumption up to July 2…
President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo on Wednesday explained a recent residential regulation that allows the use of regional to…
The central government has prepared a number of measures to increase the country's oil production.
The Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) head Thomas Lembong strongly believes the upcoming World Bank-IMF Annual Meeting could bo…
Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Ignasius Jonan on Monday revealed the energy subsidy realization may soar to Rp149 trillion …
Indonesia posted a trade deficit of $1.02 billion in August 2018, the Central Statistics Agency (BPS) announced Monday.
Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati on Friday said that the Indonesian economy will keep its good momentum.
National Logistics Agency (Bulog) president director Budi Waseso on Friday said that the state-owned food distribution doesn't…
State railway company Kereta Api Indonesia (KAI) is ready to launch the Prabu Jaya train that will connnect Kertapati and Prabumul…