China Shares Tumble amid Trade Jitters

Asia markets declined on Thursday as investors worried about the ongoing trade tensions between the United States and China.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 let go of 132.23 points, or 0.6%, to 21,151.14. Shares of index heavyweight and conglomerate Softbank Group plunged 5.3%, on word that U.S. Justice Department staff have recommended blocking a deal between T-Mobile and rival Sprint.

The Japanese yen, seen as a safe-haven currency, traded at 110.18 against the U.S. dollar after strengthening from levels beyond 110.5 in the previous session.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng tumbled 438.81 points, or 1.6%, to 27,267.13, as smartphone camera module and lens manufacturer Sunny Optical saw its stock plummet more than 7%

In Taiwan, contract manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry — commonly known as Foxconn — and chipmaker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company both fell more than 3%.

The Australian dollar was at $0.6868 U.S. after touching an earlier high of $0.6882.


In Shanghai, the CSI 300 index dropped 65.42 points, or 1.8%, to 3,583.96

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters on Wednesday that a trip to Beijing to resume trade negotiations has not been scheduled yet, reducing hopes of a speedy resolution to the trade war.

Investors also continued to watch out for developments surrounding Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei, which has been blacklisted by the U.S.

Shares of Huawei suppliers took a hit on Thursday amid the ongoing fallout.

Luxshare dropped 5.97% in Shenzhen.

In other markets

In Korea, the Kospi index eased 5.27 points, or 0.3%, to 2,059.39

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index lost 22.42 points, or 0.7%, to 3,160.72

In Taiwan, the Taiex Index plummeted 148.85 points to 1.4%, to 10,308.37

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 gained 25.94 points, or 0.3% to 10,263.41

In Australia, the ASK 200 subtracted 18.92 points, or 0.3%, to 6,491.79