Asia Pacific stocks slump after Wall Street underwhelms

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Asia Pacific equities were enduring a choppy session after Wall Street turned in a middling performance on Thursday as investors paused to digest the prospects of the Trump administration’s proposed tax reforms as well as an upbeat assessment of the eurozone’s economy from its central bank president Mario Draghi.

In Sydney the S&P/ASX 200 was off 0.3 per cent, with gains of 2 per cent from the information technology segment offset by a 1 per cent drop in materials. Miner BHP Billiton was down 2.1 per cent after this week cutting production guidance for copper, iron ore and coking coal.

Tokyo’s Topix index shed 0.2 per cent as financial stocks suffered a 1.1 per cent drop. Shares in Nintendo rose as much as 2.9 per cent after the Kyoto-based games maker announced on Thursday after market close that its new switch console had sold 2.74m units since launch in early March.

The Hang Seng index was down 0.2 per cent as segments lost across the board. Shares in Cheung Kong Property rose 0.7 per cent after the company bought back 694,000 shares on Thursday for HK$38.3m. In China the Shanghai Composite index fell 0.3 per cent while the Shenzhen Composite rose 0.2 per cent.

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