Asia Mostly Down as Oil Prices Slip Further

Stocks in Asia were mostly lower on Wednesday as oil prices slipped further into negative territory.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 regained 35.96 points, or 0.2%, to 22,846.48.

Oil companies were bruised, JXTG shedding 2.6% and Japan Petroleum Exploration declining by 2.1%.

The Japanese yen, which is widely seen as a safe-haven currency, was at 113.88 against the U.S. dollar after touching lows above 114 in the previous session

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index lost 138.44 points, or 0.5%, to 25,654.43

Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih had said on Monday that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries agreed there was a need to cut oil supply next year by around one million barrels per day from October levels.

South Korean oil stocks also declined: S-Oil declined 5.3% and SK Innovation was down 3.3%

Australian oil stocks saw broad declines on Wednesday, with Santos falling 5%, Woodside Petroleum down 2.5% and Beach Energy dropping 5%.

The Australian dollar traded at $0.7215 U.S. after rising from around the $0.717 handle yesterday.

CHINA

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 dropped 32.44 points, or 1%, to 3,204.94, with shares of Petrochina declining 2.7% while China Petroleum saw losses of 3.4%.

The country reported industrial output for October was 5.9% higher than a year ago, higher than expectations. Fixed asset investment for October also came in above expectations at 5.7% higher as compared to a year ago. Retail sales in October, however, came in below expectations at 8.6% higher year-on-year.

In other markets

In Taiwan, the Taiex index regrouped 16.04 points, or 0.2%, to 9,791.88

In Korea, the Kospi index slipped 3.18 points, or 0.2%, at 2,068.05

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index slid 10.41 points, or 0.3%, to 3,043.19

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 lost 33.78 points, or 0.2%, to 8,827.74

In Australia, the ASX 200 stumbled 101.46 points, or 1.7%, to 5,732.77