Asian markets fell on Monday as the worsening US recession added pressure on market sentiment. Hong Kong shares declined nearly 4 percent to their lowest in more than 3 months. HSBC, the second most heavy-weighted share in the index, was suspended prior to its result announcement. The bank announced an 18 percent fall in 2008 pre-tax profit and a $17.7 billion rights issue in the afternoon session. The share remained suspended at closing. Shares in Singapore also declined nearly 4 percent with Shares of Capitaland fell as much as 10 percent on Monday as investors sought to limit their overall exposure to the firm before the issue of the new rights shares.
The technical outlook of HSI is negative. The index opened gap down and fell below its January low at 12,439. It is trading below its major SMA. The intraday volatility remains at around 300 points. If HSBC resumes trading today, it may have a major effect on the market.