Asia Stocks Close Lower by 5% - TheStreet

Updated from 1:12 a.m. EDT

Asia stocks closed lower Tuesday as traders returned from a three-day weekend to find the global financial markets in tatters following the bankruptcy filing by

Lehman Brothers

(LEH)

, the acquisition of

Merrill Lynch

(MER)

by

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report

and the credit ratings of

American International Group

(AIG) - Get Report

slashed as the firm races to raise cash.

Japan's Nikkei 225 Stock Average fell 605.04 points, or 5%, to 11,609.72, while the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong closed downl 5.4%, to 18,300.61.

Stocks in Europe were trading lower. The FTSE 100 index in London fell 79.70 points, or 1.5%, to 5,124.50. The DAX in Germany fell 84.54 points, or 1.4%, to 5,979.62.

Stock futures in the U.S. also were trading lower but much improved since earlier Tuesday. Futures on the S&P 500 were down 4.70 points to 1191.40, and were 1.96 points below fair value. Nasdaq futures were off 3.50 points to 1717.75, and were 3.51 points above fair value.

Meanwhile, the Bank of Japan added $24 billion to the financial system Tuesday, while China cut interest rates on Monday in attempts to ensure market stability.

Oil fell to as low as $92 a barrel in Asia.

This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.com.