Asian stocks pare losses

<p>Asian stocks continued their downward trend today, although not as large as offshore losses. The MSCI Asia Pacific index was 0.6% lower in early afternoon […]</p>

Asian stocks continued their downward trend today, although not as large as offshore losses. The MSCI Asia Pacific index was 0.6% lower in early afternoon Tokyo trading.

The Chinese Yuan continues to weaken, dropping to its lowest level in two weeks after the PBOC set its limit slightly lower at 6.339 against the US dollar.

The Australian dollar continues to test parity having fallen below several times during the session. The Japanese Yen also continues to weaken but has held film in early afternoon trading, with the USD/JPY last at 77.92.

Gold also declined, last trading at around US$1639/oz while silver finds some support at US$30/oz, last trading slightly above. Traders are caught between a recovering U.S. market and Europe falling over, with profit taking in the gold price a quick option.

In regional corporate news, embattled Olympus Corp restated past earnings in a desperate effort to avoid being delisted from the Tokyo Stock Exchange. The group says assets exceed liabilities at the period ending March 2011. Earnings for 2011 were revised to 3.87bn yen from a 7.38bn profit previously.

In Australian corporate news, engineering group Downer EDI announced the sale of its CAG consulting group for $147m to China Architecture Design and Research. Downer’s shares, which have been hard hit this year due to contracting issues, recovered to close 4.6% higher.

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