SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific declined on Tuesday as tensions surrounding Russia and Ukraine continued to keep investors on edge.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index led losses regionally, falling 2.69% to close at 23,520.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 dropped 1%, ending the trading day at 7,161.30.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 1.53%.
Investors continued to monitor geopolitical tensions, after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered forces into two breakaway regions of eastern Ukraine, following a Monday announcement that he would recognize their independence.
After that development, the White House responded, with U.S. President Joe Biden ordering sanctions against the separatist regions of Ukraine.
The U.S. markets were closed for a holiday on Monday, though moves in stock futures stateside pointed to losses ahead for Wall Street at the Tuesday open.
Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 425 points, or 1.25%. S&P 500 futures fell 1.61% while Nasdaq-100 futures slipped 2.19%.
The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 96.242 following a recent bounce from below 95.8.
The Japanese yen traded at 114.80 per dollar, largely holding on to gains as compared to levels above 115.6 seen against the greenback last week. The Australian dollar was at $0.7202, off levels above $0.72 seen recently.
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