Investing.com – Asian shares fell during the morning trade on Monday after the news of widening trade deficit in Japan and the increasing fear that Federal Reserve’s removal of monetary stimulus will negatively hit the economic growth in China and other emerging economies.
According to the data released by Japan’s Ministry of Finance, country’s year-on-year trade deficit in December widened to JPY1.302 trillion against expectations of 1.223 trillion. Exports rose by 15.3% year-on-year against expectation of 17.8% and imports rose 24.7% year-on-year against expectations of 26.1%.
At the same time, Bank of Japan board members largely agreed that an aggressive easy policy started in April 2013 has shown a cummulative effect on economic prospects and there is not an imminent need for additional steps, according to minutes from the Dec. 19 to 20 policy-setting meeting released on Monday.
In China, property developers China Vanke fell 2.4%, China Minsheng Bank fell 1.7% and Ping An Band fell 1.6%.
Hong Kong''s Hang Seng Index was down 2.08%, China’s Shanghai Composite index fell 0.69%, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index was down 2.14%.
On Friday, U.S. stocks plummeted as part of a global selloff fueled by concerns that emerging markets may be cooling, which sparked a risk-off trading session marked by demand for safe-haven currencies.
Investors fleeing risk avoided U.S. stocks on sentiments many countries carry exposure to emerging markets.
Elsewhere on Friday, Microsoft released earnings that beat expectations, while consumer products giant Procter & Gamble missed many analysts'' expectations though the company said it was sticking with 2014 revenue forecasts.