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The noise around coronavirus is growing. Stocks in Asia are falling due to this situation and there are no signs of improvements.
South Korea’s coronavirus alert level has been raised to its highest levels, it has led to a new drop of stocks in Asia. Sources report that this action occurred as 161 new cases have been reported. Seven deaths have been reported so far.
Markets in Japan haven’t reported any data due to holiday closures on Monday. The Korean currency won fell to 1,219.22 per dollar. This follows a slide to below 1,200 last week. The Korean index (KOSPI) fell by about 3.87%. It closed at 2,079.04. KOSDAQ fell by 4.3%. It reportedly closed at 639.29. Automaker Hyundai Motor Co (KRX: 005380) stock lost about 4.3% as well.
Airlines were not left out of the slide as well. Sources indicate that Asiana Airlines Inc. (KRX: 020560) stock fell about 6.09%. Korean Air Lines Co Ltd (KRX: 003490) dropped by 6.16%. Reports further indicate that flights to Daegu had been suspended by most airlines. Daegu is South Korea’s fourth-largest Urban Area. It is reportedly the epicenter of the coronavirus in South Korea.
Regional airlines indicated drops as well. China Southern (SHA: 600029) fell about 2.73%. Qantas Airways Limited (ASX: QAN) – 7.53.%. China Eastern Airlines (SHA: 600115) lost about 3.74%.
South Korea’s Coronavirus Alert Indicates an Emerging Trend in South Asia
The virus seems to be precipitating chaos within South-East Asia. Emerging data from China has recently shown an increase in emerging new cases from the epicenter of the virus. This, however, has not made any difference in the neighboring countries as they deal with the fall-out of the emergence of the coronavirus. South Korea’s coronavirus alert is an indication of this.
The Korean Center for Disease Control and Prevention has indicated that so far seven people have died from the virus. The agency also reported that there are about 161 new cases. The total number of cases so far in South Korea total about 763. Reports indicate that South Korea has the highest number currently of cases of the COVID-19 virus outside the People’s Republic of China.
Analysts have reportedly indicated the South Korean government is reportedly preparing for a massive response. Fears of an epidemic on the Korean peninsula are reportedly on the rise there.
Industrial Stocks Follow as Well
Industrial stocks have not been left out as well. Consumer electronics giant Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (KRX: 005930) reported one case of the virus at one of its facilities. This occurred last week. The mobile factory had been shut down until today when it was reportedly reopened. The factory reportedly accounts for a minority of Samsung’s manufacturing. Sources indicate that Samsung Electronics shares fell by 4.05%.
Within the region, indices were a mixed bag, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index fell about 1.73%. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 closed with a 2.25% drop. It reportedly closed at 6,978.30. Malaysia’s FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI Index dipped 2.5%. This followed the resignation of the Prime Minister.
The MSCI Asia (exclusive of Japan) fell 2.12%. How the coronavirus affects the markets and stocks, especially in Asia, depends on how new infections emerge within the region. For now, the seriousness of the situation seems to be growing. There is still no indication that the virus will slow down.