Shares in China took a tumble on Monday after regulatory curbs on aggressive share purchases by insurers ahead of the highly-anticipated FOMC's two-day meeting starting Tuesday, while politics dominated news flows in other markets.
Shares in China plunged after the insurance regulator said late last Friday that it would curb "barbaric" stock acquisitions by insurers, Reuters reported. The Shanghai composite dropped 2.49 percent or 80.41 points to close at 3,152.47 as the Shenzhen composite ended down 4.86 percent at 100.68 points at 1,929.32.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng fell 1.35 percent by mid-afternoon.
In other news in Hong Kong, the special administrative region's Financial Secretary John Tsang resigned from his post after announcing that he would run for the role of chief executive.
In Australia, the benchmark ASX 200 closed up 0.04 percent, or 2.179 points, at 5,562.8. Its energy sub-index at its highest since October 2015, up 2.85 percent.
New Zealand's NZX 50 closed down 0.25 percent, or 17.26 points, at 6,876.04 as the country's ruling party announced Bill English as the new prime minister, following the surprise resignation of John Key last Monday.
In South Korea, the Kospi closed up 0.13 percent or 2.55 points, at 2,027.24, as South Korea struggles with a corruption scandal which led to the a parliamentary vote on Friday to impeach incumbent President Park Geun-hye. South Korea's finance minister warned on Sunday that the impeachment could weigh on sentiment in the east Asian country's economy.
South Korean prosecutors have also indicted two former government officials, one a former senior presidential aide and another a former vice minister.