Asian shares fall as Greece postpones debt repayment

<p>Investors are also awaiting key economic data from the US.</p>

Asian stocks fell today (May 5th) as investors digested the news that Greece postponed a debt repayment. It has become the first country since the 1980s to defer a payment to the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank. 

“With Greece missing today’s payment, we’re going to get at least one more month of uncertainty,” Michael Kapler, who manages equities at Mittelbrandenburgische Sparkasse, told Bloomberg. "That means June will be another volatile month for markets. Sentiment is being hit by a stalemate in Greece."

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras held talks on Wednesday and Thursday with its creditors but failed to reach an agreement to release loans, fuelling worries for the future of the country in the eurozone.

Greece told the International Monetary Fund yesterday that it would postpone a payment that was due today until the end of the month.

Meanwhile, investors are awaiting the release of the US government's monthly jobs report that may provide clues about the health of the world's largest economy.

Tokyo's Nikkei 225 dropped 0.4 per cent to 20,404.22 and South Korea's Kospi edged down 0.2 per cent to 2,067.89. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was down 0.7 per cent to 27,354.50 and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.6 per cent to 5,470.90. The Shanghai Composite Index added 0.4 per cent to 4,963.90.

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