Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 (N225)
fell 1.9%, and Korea’s Kospi (KOSPI)
lost 1.4%. China’s Shanghai Composite (SHCOMP)
and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 were both down more than 1%.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index (HSI)
fell 3.2%, poised to post the biggest daily loss in five months.
The plunge in Asia was preceded by a similar drop for US stock futures earlier on Monday evening local time. Dow (INDU)
futures were down 458 points, or 1.4%. S&P 500 futures were down about 2.3%, while Nasdaq futures were down 3.3%.
“It feels like the situation can dramatically escalate at any moment and that’s going to keep investors on edge for now,” wrote Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at Oanda, in a research note on Tuesday. “We may well be on the brink of something terrible happening and that’s continuing to feed into the negativity in the markets,” he added.
Chinese Tech Stocks hammered
Worries about a renewed tech crackdown by Beijing have also dealt a blow to some of the biggest Chinese companies in the sector.
The Hang Seng Tech Index, which tracks 30 largest tech companies listed in the city, lost 3% on Tuesday, on track to drop for a third day in a row.
On Friday, Chinese authorities released new rules
ordering food delivery platforms to cut service fees they charge businesses.
Online food delivery platform Meituan fell 6% on Tuesday. The stock has plunged 23% since Friday.
Social media and gaming giant Tencent fell nearly 2%. The firm also holds a major stake in Meituan.
Alibaba Group (BABA)
, which owns food-delivery platform Ele.me, dropped 3.9%.
On the oil front, the uncertainty about Ukraine was further reflected by a spike in futures. US crude futures jumped 3.1% to trade at $93.86 per barrel. Brent crude rose 1.5% to $96.78 per barrel.
A summit between US President Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin is unlikely
, a senior administration official told reporters, following intelligence and indications on the ground that Russia is likely to take military action in neighboring Ukraine.
Markets were closed in the United States on Monday due to the Presidents Day holiday. Last Friday
, the Dow closed down nearly 233 points, or 0.7%. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite ended the day with losses of 0.7% and 1.2%, respectively. All three indexes finished last week in the red for the second straight week.