Asian stocks fall as Paris attacks send economic worries

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

TOKYO (AP) — Asian stocks fell, opening the global trading day Monday after the attacks in Paris on Friday last week sent worries across the world about their possible economic effects.

KEEPING SCORE: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 fell nearly 1 percent to 19,393.69. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 lost 1 percent to 5,003.80. South Korea's Kospi was down 1.5 percent at 1,943.02. Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 1.6 percent to 22,035.11 while the Shanghai Composite inched back up 0.2 percent to 3,588.16. Other regional markets were also lower, including Taiwan and Singapore.

PARIS WORRIES: The attacks left 129 people dead and more than 350 injured. Investors, already nervous about slowing growth in China and the future of the eurozone, are fretting about stocks and oil prices. Travel could slow not only to Paris but other major cities, hurting airlines and other related businesses. A decline in tourism in Europe could weaken the euro.

THE QUOTE: "All indications are that these negative moves will only be temporary and are likely to dissipate over the coming days," Angus Nicholson, market analyst at IG in Melbourne, said of the stock drop and the pursuit of safe havens like gold. "The bigger question is whether this will see an escalation of the conflict in Syria and Iraq."

TRAVEL ISSUES: Qantas Airways fell 1.7 percent, recovering an earlier bigger fall. Japan Airlines fell nearly 3 percent, while ANA Holdings slipped 3.5 percent. Major Japanese travel company HIS Co. dropped 5 percent.

WALL STREET: On Friday, before the attacks happened, a streak of six consecutive weeks of gains was broken on fears the holiday shopping season will be a dud. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 202.83 points, or 1.2 percent, to 17,245.24. The Standard & Poor's 500 gave up 22.93 points, or 1.1 percent, to 2,023.04. The Nasdaq composite index slipped 77.20 points, or 1.5 percent, to 4,927.88.

ENERGY: U.S. crude added 19 cents to $40.93 a barrel. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, was up 31 cents to $44.78 a barrel.

CURRENCIES: The euro declined to $1.0736 from $1.0751 late last week, while the dollar edged down to $122.47 yen from $122.67 yen late last week.

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AP Markets Writer Marley Jay contributed to this report. Follow him at twitter.com/marleyjayAP

His work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/journalist/marley-jay

Follow Yuri Kageyama at twitter.com/yurikageyama

Her work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/yuri-kageyama