Asian stocks fell, with the regional index at a two-month low, as oil’s slump and weaker-than-estimated Chinese manufacturing stoked concern that the global economy may falter. Russia’s ruble jumped after interest rates were raised by the most since 1998, while Indonesia’s rupiah tumbled.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index (MXAP) slipped 0.7 percent by 11:04 a.m. in Tokyo, falling for a second day. A gauge of Chinese shares in Hong Kong lost 1.1 percent. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures added 0.2 percent after the U.S. gauge swung to a drop of 0.6 percent. Oil in New York fell a fifth day, sinking 0.6 percent. The ruble jumped 8.5 percent versus the dollar, according to offshore prices compiled by Bloomberg. Gold rose 0.4 percent after its biggest one-day slide in a year.
Energy companies are driving a retreat in global stocks as increasing crude output coincides with declining demand amid slowing growth outside the U.S. The Federal Reserve starts its two-day monetary policy review today, while a preliminary index of Chinese purchasing managers signaled contraction, according to HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics. The Bank of Russia raised its key rate by 6.5 percentage points, the most since the country’s 1998 default, as the world’s biggest energy exporter courts recession with the ruble at record lows.