RTTNews - The Asian markets ended mixed on Friday with the markets in China, India, South Korea and Indonesia ending positive territory while the markets in Australia, Japan, Singapore and Taiwan ended in negative territory.

In Japan, benchmark Nikkei 225 Index ended at 10,238. representing a loss of 145.21 points, or 1.40%, while the broader Topix index of all first section stocks was down 11.25 points, or 1.17%, to 947.

Light sweet crude oil price for September delivery ended at $72.49 a barrel in electronic trading, down $0.42 from its previous close $72.91 a barrel in New York on Thursday.

Reports in the U.S., which is the major market for Japanese automakers, that the popular cash for clunkers program would end by August 24 lead automakers lower. Toyota Motor Co., maker of the Prius hybrid and Corolla cars, declined 2.93%, Honda Motor fell 4.06%, Nissan Motor slumped 5.18% and Hino Motors lost 2.56%.

Exporters declined following the strengthening of the local currency against the US dollar. Sony Corp. declined 1.41%.

Metal stocks ended weaker following drop in commodity prices. Sumitomo Metal Mining lost 3.39%, Sumitomo Electric Industries fell 3.33% and Mitsui Mining & Smelting slumped 4.69%.

In Australia, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 Index shed 86.90 points, or 1.99%, to close at 4,291, while the All-Ordinaries Index ended at 4,306, representing a loss of 85.70 points, or 1.95%.

Banks declined sharply after Westpac Banking stated that flat quarterly earnings and a rise in bad debts is weighing down the banking sector. ANZ Bank lost 3.01%, Commonwealth Bank of Australia fell 3.18%, National Australia Bank slumped 4.39% and Westpac Banking declined 2.45%.

Telecommunications company Telstra declined 4.93% after federal government's Future Fund unloaded shares of the company equivalent to A$2.4 billion in the market in the previous session.

APN News & Media, the company that publishes more than 100 papers in Australia and New Zealand, reported a 53% drop in net profit for the first half, hurt by slumping advertising revenue. The shares declined 5.37%.

Apparel manufacturer Billabong International declined 5.10% following disappointing results.

Mining and metal stocks ended weaker. BHP Billiton declined 1.40%, Rio Tinto fell 2.96%, Fortescue Metals lost 1.55%, Gindalbie Metals shed 1.23%, and Oz Minerals slipped 0.90%.

Mixed trading was witnessed among energy stocks. Woodside Petroleum shed 0.80%, Oil Search lost 1.05% and Origin Energy fell 1.50%. However, Santos bucked the trend and advanced 1.77%.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index ended in negative territory with a loss of 129.84 points, or 0.64% at 20,199, on concerns about the pace of recovery in the global economy in general and mainland China in particular. Banks and resource stocks ended in negative territory while bargain hunting at lower levels in property stocks limited the losses.

In South Korea, the benchmark KOSPI Index ended in positive territory with a gain of 4.59 points, or 0.29%, at 1,581, following Wall Street where the indices ended higher for third straight session. Technology stocks and automotive stocks led the gains on hopes of recovery later in the year. However, profit taking at late session ahead of the weekend limited the gains.

The stock market in India ended in positive territory following positive economic data in Europe and expectations of recovery later in the year. The BSE Sensex finished at 15,241, up 228.51 points or 1.52% and the S&P CNX Nifty rose 75 points or 1.69% to 4,529.

Among the other major markets in the region, China's Shanghai Composite Index gained 1.69% or 49.19 points, to 2,961 and Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index added 0.23% or 5.26 points to close at 2,334. However, Singapore's Strait Times Index lost 14.71 points, or 0.57% to close at 2,545 and Taiwan's Weighted Index, ended in negative territory with a loss of 78.43 points, or 1.16%, at 6,655.

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