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Asian Markets Fall; Shanghai Kicks Off New Tech Board

Investing.com - Asian markets traded mostly lower in morning trade on Monday. Chinese stocks fell as a Nasdaq-style new technology board in Shanghai made its debut.

The Shanghai Composite dropped 0.8% while the Shenzhen Component fell 0.6%. China launched the Science and Technology Innovation Board, a new tech board on which 25 companies are listed.

The move is China’s attempt to boost the credibility of its volatile stock market. Similar to its counterpart in Hong Kong, Shanghai's new Board will allow still-unprofitable hi-tech companies to launch IPOs on the exchange.

Meanwhile, in unprecedented late-night violence in Hong Kong, it was reported that a rampaging mob who dressed in white t-shirts assaulted members of the public in the Yuen Long MTR station, including journalists.

According to local reports, no police officers were in sight during the attack, which happened after another anti-government mass march against a highly controversial extradition bill.

No one was arrested, while officers have refused to respond to queries, according to the reports.

“We have not made any arrests because we can’t be sure of those involved,” said Yau Nai-keung, assistant commander of Yuen Long District. “Even those dressed in white, that doesn’t mean they are involved in the brawl. We will handle each case fairly – no matter the political camp [a suspect] belongs to.”

Markets in Hong Kong were down but the violence did not appear to be a major directional driver. The Hang Seng Index last traded at 28,555.0, down 0.7%.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 traded 0.4% lower, while South Korea’s KOSPI was little changed at 2,095.88. Data from the Korea Customs Service showed this morning the country’s exports for the first 20 days this month fell 13.6% from a year before. Imports during the period dropped 10.3% year-on-year.

Down under, Australia’s ASX 200 was also near flat at 6,704.40.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was down 0.8%.

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