Asia shares end Friday red
Rising cases of omicron in Asia continue to put pressure on stock markets
Stock markets in Asia closed Friday in the red amid rising cases of the omicron variant of coronavirus.
China's exports increased by 20.9% and imports by 19.5% on an annual basis in December, resulting in a record foreign trade surplus of $94.5 billion.
In Japan, on the other hand, the Producer Price Index (PPI) increased by 8.5% year-on-year in December and decreased by 0.2% on a monthly basis.
The Central Bank of South Korea increased interest rates for the second consecutive year from 1% to 1.25%. Signaling that interest rate hikes may continue in the coming months, the bank reported that inflation pressure is stronger than previous forecasts.
The Asia Dow, which includes the region's blue-chip companies, lost 39.41 points, or 1.01%, to close at 3,870 points.
Losing 364.85 points, or 1.28%, the Nikkei 225 index in Tokyo closed at 28,124.
The Hang Seng, the benchmark for blue-chip stocks trading on the Hong Kong stock exchange, went down 46.45 points, or 0.19%, to 24,383.
China's Shanghai stock exchange, on the other hand, posted a fall of 34 points, or 0.96%, to 3,521.
The Indian Sensex benchmark diminished 12.27 points, or 0.02%, to close at 61,223, while the Singapore index rose 24.67 points, or 0.76%, to 3,281.