Asia markets largely fell after Wall Street logs worst week for the year

This is CNBC's live blog covering Asia-Pacific markets.

Japan ,Tokyo City skyline, Tokyo Tower. (Photo by: Dukas/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Prisma By Dukas | Universal Images Group | Getty Images

Asia-Pacific markets mostly fell on Monday after stocks on Wall Street marked their worst week for 2023 on Friday.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 closed 1.12% lower at 7,224.8. In South Korea, the Kospi finished 0.87% down at 2,402.64, and the Kosdaq rose 0.18% to end the day at 780.3.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 fell 0.11% to close at 27,423.96 and the Topix rose 0.22% to finish at 1992.78 as the Bank of Japan governor nominee Kazuo Ueda spoke to the country's upper house on Monday.

In mainland China, the Shenzhen Component dipped 0.73% to end the day at 11,701.94, and the Shanghai Composite fell 0.28% to close at 3,258.03. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index shed 0.17% in its final hour of trade, and the Hang Seng Tech index saw a similar loss at 0.19% down.

Stocks on Wall Street ended the week on Friday with sharp declines as the U.S. Federal Reserve's preferred inflation gauge showed a stronger-than-expected increase in prices last month.

The S&P 500 was down 2.7%, marking its worst week since Dec. 9. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell almost 3.0% this week — its fourth straight losing week. The Nasdaq Composite closed 3.3% lower, notching its second negative week in three.

— CNBC's Hakyung Kim and Sarah Min contributed to this report.

Venture capital firm 500 Global is bullish despite a decline in funding

There's been a drop in venture capital allocation this year, VC firm 500 Global says
There's been a drop in venture capital allocation this year, VC firm says

Global venture capital firm 500 Global is bullish on the VC sector even as startup funding declined 35% in 2022 and startups saw a slowdown in growth from rising inflation and interest rates.

"There is definitely a drop in the allocation towards ventures this year, but it really depends on which markets you are investing in, and what the opportunities set in those markets are," said Vishal Harnal, managing partner of 500 Global, on CNBC's "Squawk Box Asia" Monday.

He added that he would not call it a funding winter. Instead, unprofitable startups have been forced to be more cost-efficient and burn less cash.

"Now that there has been a switch or transition to a different way of doing business, a different modality, we are switching playbooks again," said Harnal, adding that there is still $15 billion of venture capital waiting to be deployed.

– Sheila Chiang

Fitch expects Singapore banks to continue their strong growth

Ratings agency Fitch said earnings of Singapore banks will "improve materially" in 2023 as rising interest rates boost their revenue, particularly in the first half of the year.

Fitch noted that Singapore is the only banking sector in the Asia-Pacific with an improving outlook for 2023, although this was premised on wider margins and well-contained credit costs for the sector.

It added that asset-quality risks remain manageable and costs from higher debt service burdens are likely to be well covered by the "sizeable" general provisions that the banks hold on their books.

Shares of the three major Singapore banks were mixed on Monday, with DBS down 0.35%, OCBC up 0.24%, and UOB lower marginally.

— Lim Hui Jie

People's Bank of China maintains moderately dovish tone in report

The People's Bank of China maintained a moderately dovish tone in its quarterly report, reiterating its current stance was considered appropriate to support economic growth and stability.

The central bank reiterated its support for a cross-cyclical adjustment to boost demand and provide stronger support for the economy.

It also repeated its pledge to maintain sufficient liquidity and credit growth while keeping its money supply and social financing growth at a similar pace as its nominal gross domestic product.

The PBOC added its required reserve ratio cuts last year were one of the tools the central bank used to support lending, without elaborating further.

— Jihye Lee

CNBC Pro: Investor says tech has yet to bottom — and reveals the FAANG stocks to avoid

Bear market rally or a new bull market? Market pros are undecided about this year's tech bounce, but investor Mark Hawtin thinks the worst could be yet to come.

And while FAANG stocks are popular among many investors, Hawtin believes some are riskier bets than others.

Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Zavier Ong

Chip stocks continue slide after U.S. reportedly mulls caps on South Korean chipmakers

Shares of South Korean chipmakers continued their slide on Monday.

Major chipmakers like Samsung and SK Hynix saw their shares fall by 1.63 and 1.54% respectively, while LG Electronics saw a smaller fall of 1.32%. The Kospi led losses in Asia overall, trading at 1.46% lower.

This comes after Reuters reported on Friday that the U.S. will likely impose a limit on the level of chips made by South Korean companies in China.

Reuters cited the U.S. Commerce Department's undersecretary for industry and security Alan Estevez, who said that "What will likely be is a cap on the levels that they can grow to in China," when asked what would happen after a waiver from the U.S. government-imposed rules on chipmakers in China expires.

Shares of other major chipmakers also saw losses on Monday, with Taiwanese chipmakers Hon Hai Precision Industry (also known as Foxconn) down 1.94% and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing lower at 1.35%.

— Lim Hui Jie, Jihye Lee

CNBC Pro: 'The market has gone too far:' Chief global strategist predicts when the Fed will cut rates

Despite efforts by the U.S. central bank to tighten financial conditions, "the market has gone too far," according to Seema Shah, the chief global strategist at Principal Global Investors,

The strategist told CNBC how the Federal Reserve might react and when it will cut interest rates that could boost stock markets.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.

Chief global strategist at Principal Global Investors predicts when the Fed will cut rates
Chief global strategist at Principal Global Investors predicts when the Fed will cut rates

— Ganesh Rao

Fed's Mester says rates need to go above 5% to quell inflation

Interest rates need to go even higher for inflation to come down, Cleveland Federal Reserve President Loretta Mester said Friday.

"I see that we're going to have to bring interest rates above 5%," she told CNBC's Steve Liesman during a "Squawk Box" interview. "We'll figure out how much above. That's going to depend on how the economy evolves over time. But I do think we have to be somewhat above 5% and hold there for a time in order to get inflation on a sustainable downward path to 2%."

Mester made news recently when she revealed that she was among a small group of Fed officials who, at the Jan. 31-Feb. 1 Federal Open Market Committee, wanted a half percentage point rate hike rather than the quarter-point move the panel approved.

— Jeff Cox

China Renaissance says Bao Fan is cooperating with a government probe

Missing Chinese investment banker Bao Fan is cooperating with a government investigation, his firm China Renaissance said in a filing Sunday.

"The Board has become aware that Mr. Bao is currently cooperating in an investigation being carried out by certain authorities in the People's Republic of China," the company said, noting its business operations remain normal.

China Renaissance's Hong Kong-listed shares have plunged 29% since the firm said on Feb. 16 it was unable to reach Bao. He is the company's controlling shareholder, chief executive officer and founder, among other roles.

— Evelyn Cheng

Asia week ahead: Growth, inflation and purchasing managers' index readings

Regional readings for purchasing managers' index, Japan's industrial production and Australia's gross domestic product will be some of the major economic events taking place this week.

New Zealand is slated to report its fourth quarter retail sales on Monday while Taiwan observes Peace Memorial Day until Tuesday.

On Tuesday, Japan is scheduled to release its industrial output and retail sales while Australia will announce its current account for the fourth quarter.

India will also report its gross domestic product for its fourth quarter on Tuesday. Overnight, U.S. consumer confidence for February will be released as well.

South Korea's market will be closed on March 1 to observe the Independence Movement Day.

On Wednesday, China's National Bureau of Statistics will release its government reading of purchasing managers' index after it showed a return to growth of 50.1 in January.

Australia will release its inflation reading and the gross domestic product for the fourth quarter. Economists polled by Reuters are expecting to see growth of a seasonally adjusted 2.8% on an annualized basis.

Indonesia will also announce its February consumer price index, which is expected to rise to 5.42% from a previous reading of 5.28%, according to a Reuters poll.

On Thursday, fourth quarter trade data from New Zealand will be released as well as South Korea's industrial output and retail sales. S&P Global Manufacturing PMI for South Korea is also scheduled to be released.

On Friday, Japan's unemployment rate for January is expected to come in at 2.5% for January, according to a Reuters poll. Tokyo's consumer price index for all items except for fresh food is expected to have risen 3.3% for January.

— Jihye Lee

Investors need to 'control what they can control,' says Baird

The market is currently experiencing the effects of "too much good news at once," according to Baird analyst Ross Mayfield. With inflation remaining hot and the Federal Reserve expected to continue rate hikes, Mayfield advises investors to "control what [they] can control."

"First, automate things: dollar cost averaging (investing across regularly scheduled intervals) is a great avenue to find outperformance in volatile/sideways markets," wrote Mayfield in a Friday note.

"Second, revisit your allocation to ensure you're well diversified and on-plan."

— Hakyung Kim

Stocks wrap up worst week of the year

U.S. stocks ended lower on Friday, wrapping up their worst week of 2023.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by 336 points, or 1.0%. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite slid 1.0% and 1.7%, respectively. The Dow fell as much as 510 points, or 1.54%, earlier in the trading session.

— Hakyung Kim