Asia shares tumble as Hong Kong unrest, Argentine peso crash unnerve investors

Asia shares tumble as Hong Kong unrest, Argentine peso crash unnerve investors

Investor anxiety has been fed by President Donald Trump's threat of new United States tariff hikes on Chinese goods, protests in Hong Kong and weaker-than-expected data from India, Argentina and Singapore.

The major indexes are down more than 3% for August.

Stocks in Asia kicked off the week in a mixed fashion as holiday closures crimped volume and traders weighed the ongoing trade-war tensions.

Amgen Inc rose 6% as a US judge upheld two patents relating to blockbuster rheumatoid arthritis drug Enbrel, denying a challenge by Novartis AG, which is seeking to launch a copycat version.

On Wall Street, the benchmark Standard & Poor's 500 had its biggest decline in a week while the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost almost 400 points.

Technology, health care and consumer discretionary sector stocks accounted for much of the market's decline.

(AP Photo/Lee Jin-man). A currency trader walks by screens showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI), left, and the foreign exchange rate between USA dollar and South Korean won at the foreign exchange dealing room in Seoul, South Korea, T.

The latest wave of anxious selling left the S&P 500 index down 35.95 points, or 1.2%, at 2,882.70. -Chinese trade war will.

However, protests in the Asian financial center of Hong Kong showed few signs of ending, prolonging the need for safe haven bonds.

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Corn futures for December delivery fell by the limit of 25 cents to $3.9275 a bushel, down 6%.

"I don't think the trade war is going to end any time soon, it could drag on into 2020. then you have geopolitical concerns", said Ryan Nauman, market strategist at Informa Financial Intelligence in Zephyr Cove, Nevada. The new tariff would go into effect September 1 and more directly affect US consumers.

The protests began in opposition to a bill allowing extraditions to mainland China but have quickly morphed into the biggest challenge to China's authority over the city since it took Hong Kong back from Britain in 1997.

The Merval stock index crashed 30 per cent and declines of between 18-20 cents in Argentina's benchmark 10-year bonds left them trading at around 60 cents on the dollar or even lower. Meanwhile in Argentina, the defeat of President Mauricio Macri during primary elections added to global stress.

China retail sales, industrial production and the jobless rate to be released on Wednesday. The Labor Department will release its consumer price index for July on Tuesday and Commerce Department will release last month's retail sales results on Thursday.

Companies releasing results include China's JD.com, Tencent and Alibaba; Cisco, Walmart and Nvidia of the U.S.; the U.K.'s Prudential; Australia's Telstra; Europe's Swisscom and brewer Carlsberg. They are among the last major companies to report their earnings for the latest quarter.

Benchmark US crude lost 13 cents to $54.80 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

The S&P 500 Index spiked higher after trade officials named a broad swath of consumer goods that would be spared from tariffs at the current September 1 deadline. Brent crude oil, the global standard, added 4 cents to close at $58.57 a barrel. Natural gas fell 1 cent to $2.12 per 1,000 cubic feet.

The dollar was flat and the yen little changed.

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