Asian Markets Tumble, Dragging Europe With It

Here’s what happened in Asia while you were asleep.

FT: South Korean shares led regional stocks lower on Thursday as the global economic outlook worsened along with a rising tally of weak earnings and forecasts in the region and overseas.

However, late in the trading day, the gloom was lifted somewhat after a report in the Wall Street Journal said that the US government was considering spending about $40bn to help prevent foreclosures. That helped many markets claw back some of the days losses, though markets still ended the day in negative territory.

The FTSE All-World Asia Pacific Index was trading 2.8 per cent lower at 160.03.

Korean stocks took the worst beating during the day, declining as much as 9.1 per cent before ending the day down 7.5 per cent at 1,049.71, the lowest close since July 2005.

Stocks continued to decline despite the government’s announcement earlier in the week of a $130bn package to help its banks, which need to roll over short-term foreign-denominated debt. It then announced a Won5,000bn package to help its construction and housing sector.

And, here’s how that’s affected Europe. It’ll be an hour before we see how both these markets affect us.

IHT: Global stock markets moved lower Thursday, with European exchanges edging down after another big sell-off in Asia.

In midday trading, the FTSE 100 index in London was down 2 per cent. The CAC 40 in Paris was 2.5 per cent lower, and the DAX in Frankfurt was down more than 3 per cent.

Trading in index futures in the United States suggested Wall Street stocks would open lower, after the Dow Jones industrial average fell 5.7 per cent Wednesday.

In Europe, shares of Credit Suisse fell 3.1 per cent. The Swiss bank announced a third-quarter net loss of 1.3 billion Swiss francs, or about $1.1 billion, in line with forecasts.

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