Japan's Nikkei 225 falls more than 1% as Asia-Pacific shares slip

  • Investors will continue to monitor the coronavirus situation in India, with more than 310,000 new daily infections registered on Thursday.
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 300 points overnight on Wall Street.
  • The losses stateside came after reports from multiple outlets, including Bloomberg News and The New York Times, that U.S. President Joe Biden is seeking an increase in the tax on capital gains to 39.6% from 20% for Americans earnings more than $1 million.

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SINGAPORE — Stocks in Asia-Pacific declined in Friday morning trade following an overnight drop on Wall Street.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan fell 1.36% in early trade while the Topix index shed 0.88%. South Korea's Kospi dipped 0.92%.

Shares in Australia also edged lower as the S&P/ASX 200 shed 0.14%.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.25% lower.

Investors will continue to monitor the coronavirus situation in India, on Friday, after more than 310,000 new daily infections were registered on Thursday.

Biden reportedly seeks capital gains tax hike

Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 321.41 points to close at 33,815.90. The S&P 500 declined 0.92% to finish its trading day at 4,134.98 while the Nasdaq Composite closed 0.94% lower at 13,818.41.

The losses stateside came after reports from multiple outlets, including Bloomberg News and The New York Times, that U.S. President Joe Biden is seeking an increase in the tax on capital gains to 39.6% from 20% for Americans earnings more than $1 million,

Currencies and oil

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 91.287 — off levels below 91.2 seen earlier in the week.

The Japanese yen traded at 107.90 per dollar, still stronger than levels above 108.4 against the greenback seen earlier this week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7701, following its slip yesterday from around $0.776.

Oil prices were higher in the morning of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures up 0.52% to $65.74 per barrel. U.S. crude futures advanced 0.65% to $61.83 per barrel.

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