Asian Stocks Close Mixed Thursday

Stocks in Japan fell, led by declines in auto stocks. Hong Kong shares rose.
Publish date:

Updated from 1:11 a.m. EDT

Asian stock markets closed lower Thursday as global economic concerns remain despite the U.S. Senate's approval on Wednesday night of a revised rescue plan for the U.S. financial sector.

Japan's Nikkei 225 stock average closed down by 1.9% to 11,154.76. Auto stocks, such as

Toyota Motor

(TM) - Get Report


Honda Motor

(HMC) - Get Report

, and

Nissan Motor

, fell sharply. Toyota said Wednesday that car sales in September in the U.S. fell 29.5%, a greater-than-expected decline. U.S. auto sales overall in September continued their downward spiral as buyers struggled with both high gas prices and tightening credit conditions.

The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong rose more than 1%, helped by a rally in

Ping An Insurance



scrapped an asset management deal with the Chinese insurer. Markets in Australia, China and South Korea fell.

The U.S. Senate voted 74-25 to approve legislation which authorizes the federal government to buy up to $700 billion in mortgage-related assets clogging bank balance sheets and freezing credit markets. Its passage comes just two days after the House of Representatives unexpectedly rejected an earlier version, sending stocks declining. The House is expected to again vote on the measure on Friday.

Stocks in Europe were trading higher. The FTSE 100 index in London rose 0.8%, while the DAX in Germany rose 0.4%.

Stock futures in the U.S. were mixed following Senate approval of the rescue plan.

S&P 500

futures were down 8.50 points to 1159.90, and were 4.89 points below fair value.


futures rose 1.25 points to 1580, and were 5.34 points above fair value.