Asian markets are mostly lower on Friday, headed for weekly losses as well, as investors worry about the global economy after a whistleblower report was released late Thursday indicating President Trump abused his power, and that the White House tried to “lockdown” information about the abuse.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 is the only market in the region with gains, rising 0.6% as the big four banks are moving higher heading into the afternoon. ANZ trades higher by 0.7%, with NAB up by 0.2%, Westpac gaining 0.6% and Commonwealth Bank 0.4% higher.
In Japan the Nikkei has dropped 0.9% in morning trade, with investors worried over the state of the global economy if impeachment proceedings are brought against President Trump in the U.S. The Yen also firmed early versus the U.S. dollar, putting some pressure on shares of Japanese exporters.
Markets are mixed on mainland China after sharp losses in the prior session, with the Shanghai Composite trading down by 0.1%, but the smaller-cap Shenzhen Composite adding 0.2% after sliding 2.5% yesterday. Over in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng has fallen sharply, losing 0.7% and erasing gains made in the previous session.
In South Korea, the Kospi is trading 0.7% lower, with index heavyweight Samsung trading down 1.7%. In Taiwan, the Taiex is struggling to get into positive territory as it trades lower by less than 0.1%.
Southeast Asian markets have also slipped in early trade, with Singapore’s Straits Times Index down by 0.2%, and Malaysia’s KLCI trading 0.1% lower.