Korean Tensions Resume, Asia Lower

South Korean stocks fell on Thursday as tensions on the Korean Peninsula reignited.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 tumbled 258.67 points, or 1.1%, to 23,087.82.

Technology stocks in Asia took a hit on Thursday, following losses seen by their counterparts stateside.

In Japan, conglomerate Softbank Group saw its stock drop 4.5%.

The Japanese yen traded at 105.34 per U.S. dollar after weakening from levels around 105 yesterday.

In Hong Kong, shares of Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi slipped 4.84% while Tencent declined 1.75%, with the Hang Seng Tech index
falling 3.4% on the day to 7,054.28.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng lost 431.44 points, or 1.8%, to 23,311.07.

In Hong Kong, shares of Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi slipped 4.84% while Tencent declined 1.75%, with the Hang Seng Tech index falling 3.4% on the day to 7,054.28.

The moves in Korea came following reports that South Korea’s defense ministry said North Korea had killed a missing official from the South earlier this week. It marked the first time since July 2008 that a South Korean civilian has been shot dead in North Korea, according to South Korean news agency Yonhap.

Shares of South Korean defense firm Victek soared 25.1% following the announcement, while North Korea-exposed stocks Hanil Hyundai Cement slid 2.8%, and Hyundai Elevator slipped 1.1%.

Kakao in South Korea fell 3.7%.

Meanwhile, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company shares in Taiwan shed 2.42%.

The Australian dollar was at $0.7046 after falling yesterday from above $0.712.

In other markets

The CSI 300 dropped 89.26 points, or 1.9%, to 4,563.07.

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index retreated 30.32 points, or 1.2%, to 2.450.82.

In Korea, the Kospi fell back 60.54 points, or 2.6%, to 2,272.70.

In Taiwan, the Taiex index hurtled lower 319.5 points, or 2.5%, to 12,264.38.

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 subtracted 14.72 points, or 0.1%, to 11,689.90.

In Australia, the ASX 200 slid 47.98 points, or 0.8%, to 5,875.94.