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Japan, Korea lead losses in Asia after Fed's less dovish tone

Thursday, 31 Oct 2013 | 3:22 AM ET

Asian stocks tracked their U.S. peers lower on Thursday following a less dovish than expected tone from the Federal Reserve.

Japan's Nikkei and South Korea's Kospi led losses by over 1 percent each while the Shanghai Composite fell 0.9 percent and Australia's S&P ASX 200 was marginally lower. However, Indian shares bucked the trend to trade above the flatline.

"Asian markets are mostly weaker as the investment community digests the comments from the FOMC meeting and what they imply for the Fed's asset purchase program going forward," said Stan Shamu, market strategist at IG in a note.

(Read more: Are markets at risk of 1999-style Fed bubble?)

  Name Price   Change %Change
NIKKEI
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HSI
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ASX 200
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SHANGHAI
---
KOSPI
---
CNBC 100
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Investors react to Fed meeting

As widely expected, the Federal Reserve on Wednesday opted to leave its $85-billion-a-month bond-purchasing program intact at its October policy meeting. But the tone of the Fed's statement was less dovish than expected, leading the S&P 500 to halt its four-session record run.

(Read more: El-Erian: How long will the Fed's elixir last?)

Mizuho sees signs of comeback in Japan economy
After the Bank of Japan left monetary policy unchanged, Sejiro Takeshita, Director at Mizuho International describes why he thinks the economy is on the verge of a comeback.

Nikkei loses 1.2%

Japan's benchmark index retreated from the previous day's one-week high on earnings pessimism even as dollar-yen traded within sight of Wednesday's two-week high.

Investors largely shrugged off news that the Bank of Japan left its monetary stimulus program unchanged at a policy review Thursday, as widely expected.

(Read more: The verdict on Abenomics, one year on)

In earnings news, All Nippon Airways fell over 4 percent after slashing its full-year forecast by nearly a half. Carmaker Honda Motor eased 1.2 percent after keeping its operating profit guidance unchanged while Nintendo fell nearly 2 percent after posting a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss.

Toshiba closed down 5.2 percent on concerns that it relies too heavily on NAND memory chips as its key earnings driver, a day after reporting a 14 percent fall in first-half net profit.

Kospi down 1.4%

Seoul stocks tracked closed at its lowest levels in two weeks, a day after closing at a 27-month high as foreigners snapped their buying streak. Caution also set in before Friday's preliminary export growth and trade balance data.

Index heavyweights Samsung Electronics and Hyundai Motor lost 2.3 and 3 percent, respectively while Korean Air slumped 11 percent on news that it is injecting 150 billion Korean won into its sister firm Hanjin Shipping.

Is a banking crisis brewing in China?
Mike Werner, Senior Equity Analyst, Chinese & HK Banks at Sanford C. Bernstein says it's too early to tell whether there's a crisis but thinks big banks will benefit in the short-term.

Shanghai eases 0.9%

Risk appetite in mainland markets declined as investors digested the latest earnings reports.

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the country's biggest lender, rose 0.3 percent after its third-quarter net profit rose 7.6 percent while Agricultural Bank of China lost 0.8 percent after its profit rose 15.3 percent in the same period.

(Read more: Bad loans remain most challenging for China banks)

Real-estate developers rallied after President Xi Jinping promised to increase land supply for homes, and increase spending on affordable housing projects in the latest efforts to stabilize China's property market. Poly Real Estate and Gemdale rose nearly 2 percent each.

Fears of tight liquidity eased on Thursday after the People's Bank of China injected cash into the system for the second time this week, leading the benchmark 7-day repo rate to trade under 5 percent.

Sydney inches down 0.1%

Australia's benchmark index erased slight gains to close in negative territory as investors booked profits on financials after the sector's rally in recent sessions.

National Australia Bank: Optimistic about 2014
In a First on CNBC interview, Cameron Clyne CEO at National Australia Bank explains why he's confident on the bank's growth going forward to 2014.

National Australia Bank, the nation's largest lender by assets, shed 2.5 percent despite posting a record 9.3 percent rise in full-year cash profits. That saw Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Westpac and Macquarie ease over 1 percent each.

Mining shares were mixed after copper prices heading for their first monthly fall since June. Rio Tinto rallied over 1 percent while Fortescue Metals fell 1 percent.

Qantas Airways fell 1.6 percent after announcing that it, alongside Japan Airlines, will increase its stake in Jetstar Japan.

Emerging markets mixed

Indonesia's benchmark Jakarta Composite skidded nearly 2 percent as workers began a two-day strike on Thursday to demand a salary hike, citing the rising cost of living.

Meanwhile, Indian stocks rose 0.5 percent to close around 21,141 points.

By CNBC.com's Nyshka Chandran. Follow her on Twitter @NyshkaCNBC

  Price   Change %Change
ASX 200
---
BLT
---
S&P 500
---
JPY/USD
---
NIKKEI
---
7974.T
---
7267.T
---
QAN
---
9201.T
---
KOSPI
---
9202.T
---
CBA
---
WBC
---
SHANGHAI
---
DJU2
---
1398
---
NDU2
---
1288
---
1988
---
6752.T
---
TSLA
---
CNYJPY
---
6502.T
---
593
---
538
---
MQG
---
RIO
---
FMG
---
JSX COMP
---

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