- Chinese tech stocks in Hong Kong dropped on Thursday after regulatory fears resurfaced.
- Investors also likely continued to monitor the Covid situation regionally.
SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific mostly declined on Thursday, as Chinese tech stocks in Hong Kong came under pressure after regulatory fears resurfaced.
Beijing recently announced a stepping up in oversight on Chinese listings in the U.S., many of whom are tech companies. That came after a recent crackdown on ride-hailing giant Didi and other tech firms, which once again raised concerns over the regulatory outlook.
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The broader Hang Seng index in Hong Kong led losses among the region's major markets as it slipped 2.89% on Thursday to 27,153.13.
Over in Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 advanced 0.2% to close at 7,341.40.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 1.6%.
Covid in Asia-Pacific
Investors also likely continued to monitor the Covid situation regionally. The Japanese government is set to declare another Covid-19 state of emergency in Tokyo until Aug. 22, according to local news agency Kyodo News.
Meanwhile, South Korea reported the highest daily Covid-19 cases since the pandemic hit the country, according to news agency Yonhap. Australia's New South Wales state also announced Wednesday a week-long extension of Sydney's lockdown.
Globally, the death toll from Covid-19 crossed 4 million late Wednesday as world infections topped 185 million, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
Oil prices drop
Oil prices were lower in the afternoon of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures falling 1.61% to $72.25 per barrel. U.S. crude futures dropped 1.77% to $70.92 per barrel.
The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 92.589 following a rise earlier this week from below 92.1.
The Japanese yen traded at 109.85 per dollar, having strengthened earlier this week from above 111 against the greenback. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7433 as it struggled to recover after slipping from above $0.756 earlier in the week.