Asia Lower Ahead of U.S. Fed Speech

Shares in the Asia-Pacific traded lower Wednesday, following Wall Street’s negative lead ahead of the Federal Reserve’s expected rate hike.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index was pummeled, losing 375.29 points or 1.4%, to 27,313.13

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index tumbled 336.80 points, or 1.8%, to 18,444.62.

Hong Kong-listed shares of Tencent Music Entertainment ticked higher in early trade after its debut in the city.

It was last at 18.12 Hong Kong dollars ($2.31 U,S,), up from its issue price of 17.98 Hong Kong dollars.

The company’s New York-listed shares closed 0.44% lower at $4.56 on Tuesday.

Oil futures rose 3% after Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, said there would be a partial military mobilization in the country.

Brent crude futures rose 3.07% to $93.40 per barrel, and West Texas Intermediate futures added 3.13% to $86.57 per barrel.

With markets expecting the U.S. Federal Reserve to hike interest rates by another 75 basis points this week, Bank of Singapore’s head of investment strategy Eli Lee said that aside from investing in U.S. bonds and the dollar, there may be value in other areas such as Chinese equities.

In other markets

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 skidded 29.11 points, or 0.7%, to 3,903.73

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index dipped 5.15 points, or 0.2%, to 3,261.79.

In Korea, the Kospi index lost 20.64 points, or 0.9%, to 2,347.21.

In Taiwan, the Taiex discarded 124.78 points, or 0.9%, to 14,424.52

In Australia, the ASX 200 wallowed 106.21 points, or 1.6%, to 6,700.22.

In New Zealand, the NZX faltered 71.49 points, or 0.6%, to 11,498.95.