China stock market resumed its downward trend as the yuan weakened further.
The Shanghai Composite index shed 2.7% to 2,687.9 points, dashing hopes that February 26 brief recovery could be sustained.
The index was down as much as 4.4% in the morning, hitting a 15-month low.
The losses came despite the G20 meeting in Shanghai over the weekend pledging to work towards boosting growth both in China and globally.
The yuan edged lower against the dollar as the central bank set a softer midpoint of 6.5452 per dollar – the lowest in almost one month.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng also lost ground, but fared better than the mainland, closing down 1.3% at 19,111.9 points.
Japanese shares also failed to extend their gains from February 26, trading flat as the government released mixed economic data.
The latest figures showed industrial output rose by 3.7% in January, the first increase in three months.
However, retail sales disappointed, falling by 0.1% in January, compared to forecasts for a 0.5% rise.
The Nikkei 225 index closed 1% lower at 16,026.7 points.
Gaming giant Nintendo’s shares finished the day 0.5% down after dropping sharply by 5% at one point in early trade.
The drop came after February 26 announcement that its full-year profit would be half of its original forecast.
Due to a stronger yen and disappointing sales of its handheld gaming consoles and software, the company slashed its full-year profit outlook to 17 billion yen, down from the previously expected 35 billion yen.
In Sydney, the ASX 200 closed flat at 4,880.9 points.
In South Korea, the benchmark Kospi index also finished the day flat at 1,916.6 points.
Samsung shares rose by 1.3% following February 26 decision by a US appeals court to overturn a verdict against the company in a longstanding patent dispute with Apple.
China stock market traded higher on January 6, recovering some of the steep losses made earlier this week on concerns about the economy.
The Shanghai Composite index was up 1.8% to 3,348.22 as measures from regulators to support the stock market started to have an impact.
Local reports said the securities regulator would keep in effect its ban on share sales by major shareholders until new rules were released.
The ban was set to expire on January 8.
It was put in place six months ago at the height of the mainland stock market sell-off over the summer and locked up an estimated 1.24 trillion yuan ($190 billion) worth of shares.
Photo AFP/Getty Images
The 7% plunge in the Shanghai market on January 4, which led to the suspension of trading for the first time, triggered a global equities rout.
Beijing’s decision on January 5 to inject cash into the falling market also helped soothe fears.
Economic data that suggested activity in China’s services sector expanded at its slowest pace in 17 months in December had little impact on investors’ confidence.
The Caixin/Markit purchasing managers’ index (PMI) fell to 50.2 from 51.2 in November. A reading above 50 suggests growth in the sector, while one below that suggests contraction.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index failed to match the positive run from the mainland market and was down 0.7% to 21,042.89.
Traders in the rest of Asia were cautious after a North Korean nuclear test heightened geopolitical tensions.
North Korea claimed that it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb on January 6, drawing widespread criticism from around the world.
South Korea’s Kospi index finished down 0.3% to 1,925.43, but the index was already lower before the news of the bomb.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 index ended lower by 1% to 18,191.32, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 closed down 1.2% to 5,123.1.
Shares of Japanese electronics maker Sharp fell 3.3% after reports that the troubled tech company is expected to book an operating loss of at least 10 billion yen ($84 million) for the nine months to December.
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