Asian markets were mostly lower on Thursday after the U.S. Federal Reserve 'stuck to a hawkish bent overnight and as metals prices tumbled.
Australia's S&P/ASX 200 closed down 0.27 percent, or 15.942 points, at 5876.40, weighed by declines in resources and bank plays.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index ended down 0.05 percent, or 12.25 points, at 24,683.88. On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite shed 0.26 percent, or 8.056 points, to 3127.29, and the Shenzhen Composite lost 0.28 percent, or 5.39 points, to 1896.36.
In South Korea, the Kospi ended up 0.93 percent, or 20.59 points, at a record close of 2240.26 after being closed on Wednesday.
Japan's markets were closed for the Greenery Day holiday.
Among Australian resources plays, Rio Tinto dropped 1.80 percent, but BHP Billiton edged up 0.13 percent, after shedding 2.31 percent on Wednesday. Fortescue lost 4.79 percent and Newcrest shed 1.19 percent.
Tony Farnham, economic strategist at Patersons, said in a note Thursday morning, "most base metal prices were torched in Wednesday LME trading, with spot copper, nickel and zinc prices dropping by more than 3 percent on the day."
The drop in copper prices came after a jump in inventories increased worries about an economic slowdown in China, the world's largest consumer of the metal.
The inventory rise compounded concerns after the Caixin/Markit manufacturing PMI for April, released on Tuesday, showed a greater-than-expected decline to 50.3, the lowest since September 2016.
Declines in base-metal prices had already helped to weigh the Australian dollar, which took another leg down after China Caixin Services PMI for April showed the sector's growth cooled to its slowest in nearly a year.
The Aussie was fetching $0.7403 at 2:32 p.m. HK/SIN, down from around $0.7422 before the data's release, after falling from as high as $0.7545 in Wednesday Asian trade amid the metals price falls.
Among the banks, NAB was down 0.54 percent, erasing earlier gains. The bank reported first-half cash profit rose 2.3 percent to A$3.29 billion, beating a forecast for A$3.24 billion, according to Reuters.
The Fed concluded its two-day policy meeting Wednesday afternoon, giving a positive assessment of the U.S. economy while keeping rates unchanged, as was widely expected.