Japan, Much of Asia Drops Sharply

Shares in Asia-Pacific dropped on Monday, as Japan’s markets plummeted. Meanwhile, China kept its benchmark lending rate unchanged.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 collapsed 953.15 points, or 3.3%, to 28.010.93.

Losses were seen in most sectors in Japan, with shares of automakers such as Nissan declining 4.1%, and Honda falling 3.9%. Shares of Fanuc slumped 5.6%. Among financials, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group shares fell 2.7% and Mizuho Financial Group declined 2.3%.

The Japanese yen traded at 109.88 per U.S. dollar, stronger than levels above 110.5 against the greenback seen last week.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng stumbled 312.27 points, or 1.1%, to 28,489.

The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.749, still struggling to recover after its fall last week from above $0.768.

CHINA

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 deleted 12.08 points, or 0.2%, to 5,090.39.

China on Monday announced that the one-year Loan Prime Rate (LPR) was kept unchanged at 3.85% while the five-year LPR was also held steady at 4.65%. That was in line with expectations of majority of analysts in a snap Reuters poll, who had predicted no change to the one-year Loan Prime Rate as well as the five-year LPR.

In other markets

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index shed 26.29 points, or 0.8%, to 3,117.87

The Kospi index in Korea fell 27.14 points, or 0.8%, to 3,240.79

In Taiwan, the Taiex index slumped 255.56 points, or 1.5%, to 17,062.98

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 staggered 52.57 points, or 0.4%, to 12,449.36.

In Australia, the ASX 200 faded 133.54 points, or 1.8%, to 7,235.51.