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Nikkei Markets

Asian stocks drop for fifth day on mounting trade tensions

Taiwanese suppliers to Apple rebound after Monday's declines

HONG KONG (Nikkei Markets) -- Asian stocks outside of Japan dropped for a fifth day on Tuesday as worries over the Sino-American trade war continued to weigh on the region.

The Nikkei Asia300 Index of some of the most influential regional companies in the region gave up 0.8% to 1,261.56, despite overnight gains for the S&P 500 Index and the Nasdaq Composite. The Nikkei gauge for Hong Kong fell 0.4%, while the city's benchmark Hang Seng Index entered a technical bear market as a 0.7% drop on Tuesday took losses since it hit a record high in January to more than 20%. The Nikkei gauge for China lost 1%.

Casino operators retreated in Hong Kong, with Galaxy Entertainment Group tumbling 5.8%. Analysts at Bernstein wrote in a note that their channel checks indicated gross gaming revenue for early September was below their expectation. China Southern Airlines declined 3% amid broad market losses, although the airline on Monday said it carried 14.4% more passengers in August than a year earlier.

Among other major decliners, Tencent Holdings fell 1.8%. The social-media and gaming company on Monday said it will be shutting down its Everyday Texas Hold'Em poker game amid tighter regulations for online games.

Incessant worries over escalating U.S.-China trade tensions, rising U.S. interest rates, and a weak spell for broader emerging markets have all hurt sentiment toward developing nations in Asia in recent weeks. Having already introduced two rounds of tariffs on imports from China - which have been reciprocated by Beijing - U.S. President Donald Trump has signaled America's readiness to levy duties on another $200 billion of shipments from the mainland. He warned that a further $267 billion of goods from China could also be subjected to levies.

Some technology stocks advanced following overnight gains for their U.S. peers. Hon Hai Precision Industry, which sank 3.3% on Tuesday after Trump tweeted that Apple should make its products in the U.S. if it wanted to avoid tariffs on imports from China, climbed 3.5%, while Pegatron gained 1.9% following a 3.9% drop the previous day. The Nikkei gauge for Taiwan slipped 0.1%.

The country benchmark for South Korea slipped 0.7%, amid news reports that the country will this week hold military talks with North Korea to discuss ways to ease tensions along their border. Samsung Electronics gave up 1%, while KB Financial Group and Shinhan Financial Group edged higher.

Elsewhere in the region, the Nikkei ASEAN Index shed 0.5%, while the country gauges for Singapore and Thailand gave up 0.2% and 1.7%, respectively. Markets in Indonesia and Malaysia were shut for holidays. The Nikkei index for India sank 1.8%.

-- V. Phani Kumar

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