Asia stocks drop as China data affirms weak demand
HONG KONG (MarketWatch) -- Asian stocks dropped Tuesday after Chinese trade data reaffirmed weakening domestic demand in the country, with investors taking little encouragement from news of Europe's fresh lifeline to Spain.
Regional stocks turned south after data showed China's import growth slowed more than expected in June, while the trade surplus widened sharply in June, as exports continued to grow in double-digit percentage terms. Read more on China's trade surplus.
"The basic trend is it's still slowing, and the implication is that Friday's [second-quarter gross domestic product] number will be quite weak," said Andrew Sullivan, a principal sales trader at Piper Jaffray in Hong Kong.
"It's obvious that the global economic slowdown is having an impact on China, and China isn't going to be the savior of the world," Sullivan said.
Resource firms posted notable declines in Asia following the drop in imports from key trading partner China.
In Sydney, global miners
Aluminum Corp. of China Ltd. (2600) (ACH) and
Refiners outperformed in Shanghai following a report that the National Development and Reform Commission will on Wednesday cut gasoline and diesel prices by about 4.4% to 4.6% amid falling crude-oil prices. The advance came as the price cut will be less than the extent of drop in China's crude basket. Read full story.
Concerns that regulations covering Chinese property market weren't about to be loosened also weighed on the sector, which has recorded strong gains so far this year.
On mainland exchanges, Gemdale Corp. (600383) fell 1.6% and Poly Real Estate Group Co. (600048) tumbled 3.6% in Shanghai, while
In Tokyo, shares of