13 Jan 2010

Asia-Pacific markets lower at close

7:37 pm on 13 January 2010

Markets in the Asia-Pacific were down at the close of trade on Wednesday.

In New Zealand, the benchmark index was 14 points, or 0.42%, lower at 3276. Turnover was $55.6 million.

Fletcher Building shares were down 2 cents to $8.45 per share, Telecom fell 2c cents to $2.52, while Contact Energy was unchanged at $6.32.

Auckland Airport was down 1c to $1.95 and Air New Zealand was also 1c lower at $1.17.

Sky City Entertainment fell 6c to $3.33, but Sky Television rose 2c to $5.15.

Retailer The Warehouse was up 3c to $4.08 and Kathmandu was unchanged at $2.

Australian shares have fallen for a second straight day, after Chinese moves to tighten monetary policy, the ABC website reports.

The All Ordinaries index slipped 31 points to 4,900, and the ASX 200 also lost 0.6% to close at 4,868.

China has announced plans to lift reserve requirements for banks to curtail lending and decrease the risk of inflation getting out of control.

Japanese stocks ended down 1.32%, hit by overnight losses on Wall Street, worries about a stronger yen and a plunge in the shares of troubled Japan Airlines, dealers said.

The Tokyo Stock Exchange's benchmark Nikkei-225 index dropped 144.11 points to 10,735.03, a day after its best finish since early October 2008.

The broader Topix index of all first-section shares declined 10.11 points, or 1.06%, to 944.02, AFP reports.

Japan Airlines shares plunged 81% to just 7 yen per share, hit by a flood of sell orders on fears the ailing carrier will be delisted from the bourse and file for bankruptcy to aid its restructuring.