Asian stock markets down on lower Japan exports
Asian stocks sank on Thursday after Japan announced that exports had fallen for the fifth straight month in July and weak forecasts in the US fed fears of a second recession.business Updated: Aug 18, 2011 08:41 IST
Asian stocks sank on Thursday after Japan announced that exports had fallen for the fifth straight month in July and weak forecasts in the US fed fears of a second recession.
Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 fell 0.4% to 9,019.52 after the finance ministry said exports fell 3.3% from a year earlier to 5.78 trillion yen ($75.6 billion). The downturn was largely due to the strengthening yen and the ongoing impact of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.
South Korea's benchmark Kospi index lost 1.1% to 1,871.29. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.8% to 4,271.50.
Wall Street stocks posted modest gains on Wednesday after companies reported higher earnings. But economic growth is weak around the world, and some economists worry that a second recession may be coming.
While Dell Inc. reported earnings for last quarter that were above expectations, it cut its prediction for revenue growth this year. Technology stocks on the S&P 500 fell 0.8% after Dell cut its forecast.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 4.28 points to 11,410.21. The S&P 500 rose 0.1% to 1,193.89. The Nasdaq composite fell 0.5% to 2,511.48.
Investors are also worried about Europe. Some countries have borrowed so much that they may not be able to repay their bonds, and economic growth there has slowed. Concerns about a possible default by a European country have dominated the market in recent weeks, along with worries about the slow US economy.