Stock markets across the Asia Pacific region are struggling to cope with problems created by the coronavirus outbreak. Moreover, the U.S. Federal Reserve decided to keep interest rates.
In Honk Kong, the Hang Seng index fell 2.62% to close at 26,449.13. The shares of travel-related companies such as China Southern Airlines and Cathay Pacific declined on January 30. Shares of China Southern Airlines dropped 3.34% while Cathay Pacific fell 2.13%.
Other companies also experienced problems. For example, shares of gaming company Wynn Macau fell 5.21%. Meanwhile, shares of another gaming company Melco International Development declined 5.35%.
Markets returned from the holidays in Taiwan. The Taiex index fell 5.7% to close at 11,421.74. One of the main contributing factors why the index declined is the Hon Hai Precession Industry. Shares of manufacturing giant and major Apple supplier, also known as Foxconn, fell 9.97%.
The situation was also quite complicated in other Asian markets as well. In Japan, the Nikkei 225 index fell 1.72% to close at 22,977.75. Another Japanese stock index Topix also declined on Thursday. Its index dropped 1.48% to end its trading day at 1,674.77.
In South Korea, the Kospi index fell 1.71% to close at 2,148.00. One of the most famous Samsung Electronics reported that the fourth quarter operating profit declined by about 34% in comparison with the same period in 2018.
Stocks and U.S. Federal Reserve
On Wednesday. The Federal Open Market Committee kept the benchmark rate in a range between 1.5% and 1.75%.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell made a comment regarding the coronavirus. He stated that the central bank is closely monitoring the situation.
According to Powell, it is too early to say how the virus would affect the global economy.
This virus reached all regions of China. It already created additional pressure for the stock markets in China and across the world. However, it will take time to assess its impact on the major stock indexes.