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Asian stocks retreat on profit-taking before earnings reports

February 13, 2014

Asian stocks ended Thursday lower on profit-taking as investors await a number of regional earnings reports. Also weighing on equities was Wall Street that ended mixed as Procter & Gamble`s reduced earnings outlook while the S&P 500 was little changed. - The MSCI Asia Pacific Index slipped 0.9% to 135.15 as of 16:02 in Tokyo In Japan stocks retreated from the previous day`s two-week high due to a pause in the yen's decline. Toyota fell more than 2% on news it will recall two million Prius cars worldwide. - Nikkei 225 closed 1.79% lower at 14534.74 - Topix closed 1.63% lower at 1199.74 In China stocks fell for the first time in five days due to weakness in the property sector. Lenovo fell 1% although the company reported that the quarterly net income rose an annual 29%. - Shanghai Composite closed 0.55% lower at 2098.40 - Hong Kong's Hang Seng closed 0.54% lower at 22165.53 In Australia, shares erased gains after hitting a three-week high earlier in the session after the January jobless rate rose to a decade high, which could determine the central bank to hold rates steady for some time. - The S&P/ASX 200 closed 0.04% lower at 5308.10 - New Zealand's NZX 50 closed 0.07% higher at 4873.53 In South Korea, shares erased gains on heavy foreign selling after hitting a three-week high earlier in the session. The central bank left its base rate steady for a ninth straight month, as expected adding further downside pressures on equities. - Kospi closed 0.46% lower at 1926.96

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Source: Financial Markets

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