Asian stock markets retreated Wednesday, with airlines taking a hit as dealers fret over increased geopolitical tensions following the downing of a Russian jet by Turkey.
The signing on Sunday by the leaders of the 10 Southeast Asian countries of the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on the formation of the ASEAN Community by Dec. 31 should not be misconstrued as the culmination of the process of economic integration in the region. It is only the beginning and remains a work in progress.
Thirteen years after the idea was mooted, Southeast Asian leaders on Sunday formally created a unified economic community in a region more populous and diverse than the European Union or North America, and with hopes of competing with China and India.
Indonesia and Malaysia, the world's top two palm oil producers, signed an agreement Saturday to set up a council for palm oil producing countries in a bid to ensure price stability by managing production and stock in the global market.
The Asian Development Bank said Friday it has approved combined loan assistance to Pakistan of nearly US$1.4 billion for programs targeting its power sector, a crucial boost as Islamabad struggles to resolve a years-long energy crisis.
Stockmarkets mostly fell Monday following the deadly weekend terror attacks in Paris -- with airline stocks taking a beating on concerns over the tourism industry.
Major Asian markets mostly shrugged off a negative lead from Wall Street on Thursday, with Shanghai performing especially strongly and Japan Post shares soaring again in Tokyo.
Asian stocks mostly rose on Tuesday after the U.S. and some European markets advanced overnight, though the hangover from China's slowing growth still lingered.
Asian stocks fell Monday and oil prices dropped as investors weighed fresh data showing China's slowdown could be deeper than previously thought, while the U.S. dollar extended losses against the yen and most emerging currencies.
The yen slipped in Asian trading Friday afternoon after a brief surge on the Bank of Japan's (BOJ) decision to hold off fresh easing measures, as markets bet that it would be forced to act sooner than later.