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Nikkei Markets

Asian equities decline as global growth concerns resurface

PetroChina and Tencent among losers amid trade war and Brexit-related jitters

HONG KONG (Nikkei Markets) -- Asian shares outside of Japan fell Tuesday amid renewed investor concerns over the outlook for the global economy.

The Nikkei Asia300 Index declined 0.6% to 1,251.26. Hong Kong shares of PetroChina declined 3.3% to HK$4.96. The company forecast a jump of up to 132% in its 2018 net income at 52.8 billion yuan ($7.76 billion) after factoring in a non-recurring loss of 10 billion yuan. Analysts at Goldman Sachs wrote in a report that the forecast implied a profit fall of up to 51% in the fourth quarter. They decreased the price target for PetroChina's Hong Kong-listed shares by 1.7% to HK$5.75. Other Hong Kong-listed energy companies also declined. CNOOC slipped 1.4% and China Petroleum & Chemical (Sinopec) ended 1.1% lower.

Internet services major Tencent Holdings fell 1.2%. China's broadcasting regulator on Tuesday approved the release of a third batch of video games after imposing a ban last year amid growing concerns over gaming addiction among yongsters. A list released by the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television did not include any titles from Tencent.

U.S. equity index futures signaled that Wall Street may open on a negative note after the extended weekend. The decline of 0.7% on S&P 500 Index futures came amid concerns over slowing global economic output.

On Monday, the International Monetary Fund cut the world growth forecast for the second time in three months. The organization cut its growth forecasts by 0.2% and 0.1% to 3.5% and 3.6% for the present year and for 2020, respectively, and warned that trade tensions may further hurt the economic outlook. The IMF cited the ongoing trade war between the U.S. and China and the possibility of the U.K. leaving the European Union without a deal among reasons for the downward revision.

ING Bank said that slowing China growth and the IMF growth outlook will make investors "turn defensive."

Samsung Electronics declined 1.4% on Tuesday amid losses on the Nasdaq Composite futures.

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries advanced 4.9%. The Indian drug maker said earlier Tuesday that it will make its unit the new distributor for its domestic formulations business in place of Aditya Medisales following allegations of financial irregularities and related party transactions.

Shares of Hyundai Mobis ended 0.2% higher. The South Korean automotive part manufacturer said on Tuesday its overseas orders were worth $1.7 billion in 2018 and it is targeting foreign orders of $2.1 billion in the current year.

 Krung Thai Bank slipped 1%, in-line with losses on most other Indonesian banks. Late Monday, the lender said that December quarter net profit rose 28%, but interest income in the same period remained little changed.

--Nimesh Vora

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