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Markets Right Now: Asian shares tumble, Nikkei drops 7.1 pct - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Markets Right Now: Asian shares tumble, Nikkei drops 7.1 pct

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NEW YORK (AP) - The latest on developments in financial markets (All times local):

Midnight

Top Japanese officials are seeking to downplay concerns about plunging share prices, pointing to strong growth and corporate earnings as reasons for calm.

The comments came as the benchmark Nikkei 225 index dipped 7.1 percent in Tuesday afternoon trading, before recovering slightly. A short time later, the index was down 6.5 percent at 21,205.03.

Finance Minister Taro Aso said he didn't want to comment on share prices, but he did ask reporters if corporate performances were getting worse, indicating they are not.

Toshimitsu Motegi, an economy minister, said he was watching market movements closely but that the economy was stable and improving.

By early afternoon in Asia, Dow and S&P futures were both down more than 4 percent, suggesting a weak open for U.S. markets.

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9:10 p.m.

Shares are tumbling in Asia after a wild day for U.S. markets that resulted in the biggest drop in the Dow Jones industrial average in six and a half years.

Japan's Nikkei 225 index dropped as much as 5.6 percent in early trading Tuesday. By late morning it was down 5.2 percent at 21,511.04. Hong Kong's Hang Seng sank 3.9 percent to 30,996.51 and the S&P ASX 200 in Australia skidded 3.2 percent to 5,835.00.

The U.S. dollar also weakened against the Japanese yen trading at 108.68 yen, down from 109.12 on Monday. A weaker dollar and stronger yen tend to hurt prices of export-oriented manufacturers in Japan.

Shares in other regional markets also were lower.

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4 p.m.

The Dow Jones industrial average plunged 1,175 points, or 4.6 percent, erasing its gains for the year.

The Dow's drop Monday was its biggest in terms of points, but it had a larger percentage drop as recently in 2011.

The Dow is down 8.5 percent from the record high it hit in late January.

The slump began Friday as investors worried that higher inflation and interest rates could derail the long-running rally.

At one point the Dow was down as much as 1,600 points.

The Dow ended at 24,345.

The Standard & Poor's 500, the benchmark for many index funds, fell 113 points, or 4.1 percent, to 2,648. The Nasdaq fell 273, or 3.8 percent, to 6,967.

Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.73 percent.

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3:08 p.m.

The Dow Jones industrial average plunged as much as 1,500 points, erasing its gain for the year, as the market extends a slump that began Friday.

The Dow's point loss would be its biggest of all time, though in percentage terms, its 5.6 percent decline wasn't as big as its worst drop during the financial crisis.

The slide Monday brought the Dow back below 24,000 points.

The market's slump began on Friday as investors worried that creeping signs of higher inflation and interest rates could derail the market's record-setting rally.

The Dow skidded as much as 1,500 points, before recovering some of its losses. It was down 872, or 3.4 percent, to 24,651.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 74 points, or 2.7 percent, to 2,686

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2:28 p.m.

Stocks are extending their slide on Wall Street, bringing the Dow Jones industrial average down 500 points.

The slide Monday brought the Dow back just below 25,000 points, a level it first crossed a month ago.

The market's slump began on Friday as investors worried that creeping signs of higher inflation and interest rates could derail the market's record-setting rally.

Banks are taking some of the biggest losses.

Wells Fargo plunged 8 percent after the Federal Reserve hit the bank with new sanctions over a scandal that involved opening millions of phony consumer accounts.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 51 points, or 1.9 percent, to 2,711.

The Dow was down 530 points, or 2 percent, to 24,999.

Bond yields slipped after moving sharply higher Friday.

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11:45 a.m.

U.S. stocks are lower at midday as banks fall following more punitive action against Wells Fargo.

Wells Fargo dropped 8 percent Monday after the Federal Reserve hit the bank with new sanctions over a scandal that involved opening millions of phony consumer accounts.

Energy companies were also moving lower as the price of crude oil slipped. Exxon Mobil fell 3.5 percent.

The market is coming off its worst week in two years. Stocks fell sharply on Friday as traders worried about inflation and rising interest rates.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 14 points, or 0.5 percent, to 2,748.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 159 points, or 0.6 percent, to 25,364. The Nasdaq composite lost 14 points, or 0.2 percent, to 7,225.

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9:35 a.m.

Stocks stumbled in early trading on Wall Street as banks fell following punitive action against Wells Fargo.

Wells Fargo plunged 8 percent in the first few minutes of trading Monday after the Federal Reserve hit the bank with new sanctions in response to its opening of phony accounts for several million consumers.

Other banks also fell. Industrial companies were also falling. Boeing lost 2 percent and Caterpillar was down 1 percent.

The market is coming off its worst week in two years. Stocks fell sharply on Friday as traders worried about inflation and rising interest rates.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index dropped 20 points, or 0.7 percent, to 2,741.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 233 points, or 0.9 percent, to 25,295. The Nasdaq composite lost 52 points, or 0.7 percent, to 7,189.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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