Asia weaker, Nikkei down 2.2%, ASX down 0.6% – CNBC

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Major markets in Asia were mostly down on Friday, with the Japanese market falling behind its regional peers.

The Japanese benchmark Nikkei 225 index shed 2.17 percent in morning trade, with Trend Micro being the biggest loser, shedding 13.40 percent. Overnight, the security software maker announced its fourth quarter earnings result and consolidated revenue for fiscal year 2015, ending Dec. 31.

For the fiscal year from January 1, 2015 through December 31, 2015, the company’s net income was 21.43 billion yen ($189 million), down 3.9 percent on-year.

Across the Korean Strait, the Kospi was flat while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index slipped 0.62 percent.

Down Under, the S&P/ASX 200 was down 0.63 percent, dragged by the energy and financials sectors, both down 3.24 and 0.26 percent, respectively.

Chinese markets started the day lower as well, with the Shanghai composite down 0.38 percent while the Shenzhen composite fell 0.20 percent.

Overnight in the U.S., major indexes closed down. The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 40.40 points, or 0.25 percent, at 16,413.43. The S&P 500 was down 8.99 points, or 0.47 percent, at 1,917.83 while the Nasdaq composite slipped 46.53 points, or 1.03 percent, at 4,487.54.

Tom White, head trader and chief market strategist at Red Option Advisors, told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” that movements on Wall Street overnight were also partly due to consolidation in the overall market, following the rapid movements in equities over the last month and a half.

“What we’re seeing here is people taking a break from these massive swings we have had recently,” he said. He added that it’s likely that in the month leading up to the U.S. Federal Reserve‘s meeting in March, there will be some range-bound trading unless a new catalyst emerges to move markets such as another sharp dip in oil prices.

Evan Lucas, market strategist at IG, said in a morning note there were some upsides in overnight trade.

“The US was unable to have four consecutive 1 [percent] gains, which it has only done once since 1982,” he wrote, adding, “However, the snap back is a positive too big to ignore and even if it lost 1 [percent] tonight, it will still have had its best week of 2016.”

In Europe, Lucas said the bank ‘capitulation’ trade was closing as “markets respond to the fact money markets and TLTRO [Targeted Longer-Term Refinancing Operations] loans are not showing any signs of distress and the ‘whatever it takes’ line is trotted out again by the ECB shoring up default concerns.”

Asia weaker, Nikkei down 2.2%, ASX down 0.6% – CNBC}