Asian markets down as markets await Fed rate decision

28-01-2008

Asian markets down as markets await Fed rate decision
Share prices in Asia took another dip on continuing worries over the US economy slowdown ahead of another meeting of the Federal Reserve.

Tokyo's Nikkei lost four per cent after a three-day rally last week, while the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong shaved off nearly 4.5 per cent on the continuing impact of the US subprime debacle.

The Sensex index in Mumbai, India, closed 4.3 per cent lower, showing the reach of the mortgage crisis and reflecting the volatility of global markets over the last week.

The decline follows a poor performance last Friday on Wall Street, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average falling by 1.4 per cent, the Nasdaq coming down 1.5 per cent and the Standard and Poor chipping off 1.6 per cent.

The Federal Reserve is set for another meeting at the end of this month where it will decide whether to make another rate cut.

Investors, jittery over the US outlook, have been cautious ahead of the announcement.

The Fed made an emergency move last week, cutting rates by 0.75 percentage points, from 4.25 to 3.5 per cent.

It is largely expected that Fed chairman, Ben Bernanke, will announce rate cuts of another 0.25 per cent at the upcoming meeting.

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