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Asia equities continue selloff as China trade fails to lift growth woes

Asian shares started the week lower on Monday, adding to last week's tumble, as strong Chinese data failed to soothe worries about sluggish global growth. Volumes were also light with Japan shut for a holiday.

Chinese exports surged 15.3 percent in September from the year-ago period, beating the 11.8 percent gain expected in a Reuters poll. Imports meanwhile rose 7 percent, versus forecasts for a decline of 2.7 percent and following a fall of 2.4 percent in August.

"The strength seems to have been driven by a surge in imports for processing and re-export. As such, it mostly reflects a brighter export outlook rather than a pick-up in domestic demand," said Julian Evans-Pritchard, China economist, at Capital Economics in a note.

The report follows a global selloff last week, which saw U.S. markets post their third weekly loss on fears of the euro zone re-entering recession and speculation of higher interest rates in the U.S.

Sentiment was also dampened after member countries of the International Monetary Fund said over the weekend that bold action was needed to bolster the global economic recovery, urging governments to carry out key labor market and social security reforms.

Meanwhile, oil markets remained under pressure on Monday after Kuwait's oil minister reportedly said on Sunday that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is unlikely to cut production to support falling prices. Top exporter Saudi Arabia said that it was comfortable with prices below $90 a barrel.

Symbol
Name
Price
 
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NIKKEI
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HSI
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ASX 200
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SHANGHAI
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KOSPI
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CNBC 100
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China markets lower

China's benchmark Shanghai Composite index fell 0.4 percent, extending losses from Friday, following comments from central bank officials over the weekend. People's Bank of China (PBOC) governor Zhou Xiaochan said prudent monetary policy will be continued while economist Ma Jun said that he doesn't expect large-scale fiscal or monetary stimulus anytime soon.

Banks underperformed; Bank of Communications and Bank of China fell 1 percent each.

Hong Kong stocks posted modest losses as the city's pro-democracy movement entered its third week. On Monday, police began to remove barriers in certain protest areas to clear roads, but said demonstrators can remain where they are.

Read MoreGoldman slashes Hong Kong growth outlook

ASX 0.6% lower

Australia's benchmark S&P ASX 200 closed at a new eight-month low for the second straight day, but pared losses following a 1 percent slide earlier in the session.

Banks were among the biggest laggards; Westpac and Commonwealth Bank of Australia declined 1 percent each.

Property development firm Stockland lost 1 percent after acquiring a 50 percent stake in a Queensland shopping mall from AMP Capital.

Kospi down 0.7%

South Korean shares fell to their lowest levels since March for a second session, dragged down by losses in chipmakers

Read MoreSouth Korea faces nuclear waste storage crisis

SK Hynix lost over 1 percent and LG Display slumped over 5 percent after Microchip Technology suggested cloudy prospects for the sector.

Nifty up 0.3%

Indian shares hit a two-month low ahead of September consumer inflation data, but managed to pare losses to end the session higher.