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Be advised that the Asian markets had a rough day, nearly all of them closing at a loss. Some of them are at lows not seen in more than 5 years.
The European markets barely held onto what they have, with marginal gains and losses posted throughout.
Look for Wall Street to enjoy another zig-zag, see-saw day. After dropping nearly 700 points, the DJIA rallied in the last 20 minutes to post a loss of only just over 500 points. On that index, the low set earlier this month on October 10th is being tested. If it fails to hold, the next real support will be around the lows set in late 2002, around 7500. Failing to hold there could send it into a death spiral towards the trading ranges seen in the 80s.
Here’s the news, this time from CNN(emphasis mine):
Asian markets sold off Thursday on fears about the impact of a global recession, with South Korean, Japanese and Hong Kong indexes plunging to multi-year lows as investors dumped shares across the board.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 Average dropped to its lowest level in more than five years as exporters such as Mazda Motor Corp. and Nintendo Co. were slapped by a rally in the yen and after steep losses on Wall Street overnight.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index dropped below the psychologically-crucial 14,000-point level for the first time since July 8, 2005.
“Investors are shying away from equities and moving towards the bond markets. It’s no longer a matter of where you’re going to get growth from, it’s more about how you’re going to protect your capital,” said Andrew Sullivan, a sales trader at Main First Securities in Hong Kong.
“You’ve just got investors getting very worried, with very strong and its’ very difficult to exporters to see any growth going ahead,” he added.
During the session, the Nikkei 225 Average dropped as much as 7.6% to touch a low of 8,016.61, a level it hasn’t seen since May 22, 2003, before recovering. It was recently down 5.5% at 8,198.03, on top of a 6.8% plunge Wednesday. The broader Topix index fell 4.7% to 847.16.
South Korea’s Kospi dropped as much as 10.3% at one point during the session to reach a level it hasn’t seen since July 8, 2008, before recovering. The index lost 9.1% at 1,031.18 in afternoon trading.
The South Korean won also plunged against the U.S. dollar, which recently bought 1,415.9 won, compared with the previous close at 1,361.5 won.
The Hang Seng Index, meanwhile, fell 4.5% to 13,625.96, while the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index gave up 7.4% to 6,208.59. On mainland China, the Shanghai Composite lost 2.6% to 1,845.91.
Elsewhere, Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index fell 4% to 3,988 and New Zealand’s NZX 50 index gave up 3.2% to 2,807.34, although the country’s central bank cut its benchmark interest rates by one percentage point to 6.5% earlier in the day.
Singapore’s Straits Times index fell 4.3% to 1,743.56, Taiwan’s Taiex declined 3.1% to 4,713.85 and Philippines’ PSE Composite gave up 4.6% to 1,995.92.
India’s Sensitive Index, or Sensex, dropped 4% to 9,765.76 in early trading.
I am Jon. Get dollars. Hold them.