(BANGKOK) — Asian stock markets fell Monday as traders await a packed schedule of data releases this week in the U.S. and a key meeting of the Federal Reserve. Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 dropped 2.5 percent to 13,766.09 as the yen continued to reverse some its recent fall. South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.4 percent to 1,903.36, hurt by losses among technology shares. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.4 percent to 21,889.67. On the Chinese mainland, the Shanghai Composite Index shed 1.3 percent to 1,984.45 Analysts expect to see a drop when the U.S.
China’s manufacturing weakened by more than estimated in July, according to a preliminary survey of purchasing managers that casts further doubt on the government’s ability to meet its annual economic growth target.
The reading of 47.7 for an index released today by HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics, if confirmed in the final report Aug. 1, would be the lowest in 11 months. Readings below 50 indicate contraction. A separate euro-area gauge showed manufacturing unexpectedly expanded this month.