Stock markets across Asia Pacific were sent reeling today amid gloomy economic news, further coronavirus fears and the slashing of global oil prices.
Shipping shares took a battering, especially in Japan, where the nation’s big three lines, Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) and Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line), saw their share prices drop 7.8%, 6.7% and 10% respectively on a day when the Nikkei 225 fell 5.07%.
Revised data showed Japan’s gross domestic product shrank faster than first thought in the October-December quarter, contracting at an annualised pace of 7.1% as a tax hike hit consumption hard amid a global slowdown, and businesses cut capital spending at the fastest pace since the global financial crisis.
Stock markets elsewhere took a hammering today. Carriers in Taiwan and South Korea also saw their share prices tumble.
The share prices of HMM and Korea Line dropped by around 5.9% and 4.4% respectively while in Taiwan the share price of Yang Ming and Evergreen Marine also decreased by 3.3% and 2.5% respectively.
Confounding the plunges seen elsewhere, Cosco and China Merchants, China’s state-run maritime conglomerates, saw their share prices rise today. While Cosco Shipping Holding saw a mild increase of 1.4%, the share price of Cosco’s energy shipping unit Cosco Shipping Energy Transportation surged by 9.7% today, and China Merchant Energy Shipping also enjoyed a 10% rise as the nation gets its economy back on track and imports of energy ramp up.