China's Shenzhen stocks down 2% in mixed Asia trade; EV maker Xpeng plunges more than 10%

A woman walks by the gate of the Shenzhen Stock Exchange on August 20, 2020 in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province of China.
VCG | Visual China Group | Getty Images

Asia-Pacific shares were mixed on Wednesday after the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 posted their third day of losses in the U.S.

Mainland China markets slipped. The Shenzhen Component led losses regionally, tumbling 2.88% to end the session at 12,096.39. The Shanghai Composite was 1.86% lower to close at 3,215.20.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index dropped 1.07% in the final hour of trade, with the Hang Seng Tech index losing 2.72%. Electric vehicle maker Xpeng plunged more than 12% after it reported a wider-than-expected quarterly loss.

Japan's Nikkei 225 closed 0.49% lower at 28,313.47 and the Topix also ended the session 0.22% lower at 1,967.18.

The S&P/ASX 200 in Australia gained 0.52% to 6,998.1 while South Korea's Kospi was up 0.5% at 2,447.45 and the Kosdaq advanced 1.24% to 793.14.

Overnight in the U.S., the Dow slipped 154.02 points, or 0.47%, to 32,909.59. The S&P 500 dropped 0.22% to 4,128.73, and the Nasdaq Composite was slightly lower at 12,381.30.

Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis President Neel Kashkari pointed towards supply-side shocks driving "half to two-thirds" of the nation's high inflation.

"The more help we get from the supply side, the less the Fed has to do, and the better we're able to avoid a hard landing," he said, speaking at an event at the University of Pennsylvania. He did add, however, there's some evidence that supply chains are beginning to normalize.

Thailand's SET briefly gives up gains as court orders Prime Minister to be suspended from duties

Thailand's Constitutional Court ordered the nation's Prime Minister to be suspended from his duties while it reviews a petition claiming he's overstayed his legal term in office, Reuters reported.

The court announced it would hear a petition brought by the main opposition party that claims Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha's legally mandated eight-year term limit should include his time spent as the head of a military junta, the report said.

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan will take over as interim leader, a government official said earlier in the week, according to Reuters.

The SET index briefly gave up earlier gains after the announcement, but was last 0.2% higher.

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–Jihye Lee

Japanese power stocks soar on reports of restarting nuclear reactors

Share prices of Japanese electricity production companies climbed after Nikkei reported that the government is aiming to restart more nuclear reactors.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida confirmed the reports in a briefing, saying that his administration also discussed developing next-generation reactors.

Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO) rose nearly 10% by mid-afternoon trade while others such as Kansai Electric Power, Tohoku Electric Power and Hokkaido Electric Power (HEPCO) also gained between 2% and 3%.

Japan has ten full-service electric power companies.

— Su-Lin Tan

Ping An is 'not an activist investor,' co-CEO says, despite pressure on HSBC

Ping An Group names three key challenges it faces
Ping An Group names three key challenges it faces

Ping An Insurance Group is not an activist investor, co-CEO Jessica Tan told CNBC's "Squawk Box Asia" when asked about the company's call on HSBC to spin off its Asia business.

"We support any proposal that will actually improve shareholder value in the long term," she said. "We are not an activist investor, but we do care very much about long term value."

Ping An Asset Management is the largest shareholder of HSBC Holdings, and owns 8.3% of the bank, according to data from Refinitiv.

On Tuesday, Ping An reported a 3.9% rise in profit in the first half of the year compared to the same period in 2021. Ping An's Hong Kong-listed shares were up more than 2%, while the broader Hang Seng index was down 1.1%.

— Abigail Ng

Shares of India's NDTV surge on Adani's announcement of takeover bid