Asian markets continue to slide; Nikkei down 414pts
Asian markets are once again down deep into red despite some bounce back on the Wall Street. Asian stock markets suffered fresh losses on Friday as fears grew that the financial crisis is taking a heavy toll on corporate earnings in the region.
ASIAN stock markets plunged to their lowest levels in years on Friday as fears grew that the financial crisis is taking a heavy toll on corporate earnings.
The yen soared to a 13-year high against the dollar and to a six-year peak against the euro as investors took shelter from the latest storm lashing global financial markets.
'The best word to describe what's going on right now is panic,' said Credit Suisse strategist Satoru Ogasawara. 'When you don't know what will come next, you tend to flee to the safest place'.
Japan's Nikkei index plunged 9.60 per cent, ending below the key 8,000-point level for the first time in more than five years as the yen soared and after a profit warning from tech giant Sony.
South Korean shares dived 10.6 per cent - a day after a 7.4 per cent plunge - after the domestic economy grew at its slowest pace for four years and Samsung Electronics reported a sharp drop in quarterly profit.
'The market seems to be still in panic,' Mr Lee Kyung Soo, from Taurus Investment & Securities, told Dow Jones Newswires in Seoul.
Sydney ended with a loss of 2.6 per cent, while Hong Kong was down nearly seven percent in the afternoon session.
The sell-off came as Asian leaders meeting in Beijing agreed to set up an US$80 billion (S$120.7 billion) fund to fight the global economic crisis.
The deal between South Korea, China, Japan and the 10 members of the Association of South-east Asian Nations is the first major coordinated regional action since the full force of the financial turmoil erupted last month.