BEIJING (AP) — Asian stocks fell for a third day on Friday after further rate hikes by the Federal Reserve and other central banks to control lingering inflation raised fears of a possible global recession.
Shanghai, Hong Kong, Seoul and Sydney fell. Oil prices fell slightly. Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.
Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index fell for a third day on Thursday after rate hikes by central banks in Britain, Switzerland, Turkey and the Philippines. The Fed raised its key rate on Wednesday for the fifth time this year and signaled more hikes were on the way.
“Global equities are struggling as the world expects soaring rates to trigger a much earlier and possibly severe global recession,” Oanda’s Edward Moya said in a report.
The Shanghai Composite Index lost less than 0.1% to 3,107.88 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.4% to 18,064.67. The Kospi in Seoul fell 1.8% to 2,290.54.
Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 fell 2% to 6,567.30 and India’s Sensex opened 1.1% lower at 58,467.75. Markets in New Zealand and Southeast Asia declined.
The S&P 500 fell 0.8% on Thursday to 3,757.99. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.4% to 30,076.68 and the Nasdaq composite slipped 1.4% to 11,066.81.
Also on Friday, Vietnam’s central bank raised its policy rate by 1 percentage point, surprising forecasters. The State Bank of Vietnam appeared to be trying to curb inflation while discouraging capital outflows in search of higher interest rates abroad.
Investors worry that the Fed and other central banks are willing to tolerate a painful collapse in economic activity to get prices under control.
Some point to signs that the US economy is cooling as the Fed backs its plans for further rate hikes. But Chairman Jerome Powell said Wednesday that the Fed would keep rates high for an extended period if necessary to bring inflation back to its 2% target.
US consumer inflation fell to 8.3% in August from a peak of 9.1% the previous month. But core inflation, which excludes volatility in food and energy prices to give a clearer picture of the trend, rose to 0.6% from the previous month, from 0.3% in July. . This indicated that upward price pressure was still strong.
The Fed on Wednesday raised its benchmark rate, which affects many consumer and business loans, to a range of 3% to 3.25%. It released a forecast saying it expects the benchmark rate to be 4.4% by the end of the year, one point higher than expected in June.
Traders are also eagerly awaiting quarterly financial results from major companies.
In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude fell 25 cents to $83.24 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 55 cents to $83.49 on Thursday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell 28 cents to $89.25 a barrel in London. It was up 63 cents the previous session at $90.46.
The dollar fell to 142.18 yen from 142.49 yen on Thursday. The euro fell from 98.31 cents to 98.23 cents.
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