Asian Markets Round-up 28 May
An electronic board showing the fluctuations of Japan's Nikkei index outside a brokerage firm in Tokyo, on 28 May Reuters

Asian markets outside Japan and Korea traded lower on 28 May, with Chinese shares plunging, despite an upbeat handover from Wall Street.

The Japanese Nikkei finished 0.39%, or 78.88 points, higher at 20,551.46

The Shanghai Composite finished 6.50%, or 321.45 points, lower at 4,620.27.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng finished 2.23%, or 626.90 points, lower at 27,454.31.

Australia's S&P/ASX 200 finished 0.21%, or 12.20 points, lower at 5713.10.

South Korea's Kospi Composite finished 0.16%, or 3.39 points, higher at 2,110.89.

India's S&P BSE Sensex finished 0.21%, or 57.95 points, lower at 27,506.71.

Market movements

The Nikkei struck a new 15-year high, logging its 10th straight rise on the back of a weaker yen, marking its longest winning streak since February 1988. The index has gained some 17.73% so far this year.

On the domestic data front, retail sales rose 5% in the year to April. While the latest figure missed expectations for a 5.4% increase, it still marked the indicator's first increase in four months.

Capital Economics said in a note to clients: "The rebound in retail sales in April did not reverse the plunge in March, and we think that consumer spending will remain sluggish in coming months."

Elsewhere, Chinese and Hong Kong shares dropped as a growing number of brokerages tightened margin trading requirements for clients.

The Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) saw A share turnover hit CN¥1.2tn (£126.26bn, €176.92bn, $193.52bn), a record high, on the selloff, Reuters reported.

The Shanghai Composite logged its biggest one-day loss since 19 January. But the index is still up some 43% so far this year, despite a slowing economy, as new retail investors flood the world's best performing market.

Bernard Aw, an analyst at ING Markets in Singapore told Reuters that "the brokerages [were] front running what the regulator wants to do."

Meanwhile, the ASX dropped after weaker-than-expected first-quarter capital expenditure data suggested that rate cuts were failing to boost the Australian economy.

Company stocks

In Tokyo, Mizuho Financial Group jumped 5.90%. Resona Holdings and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group added 3.46% and 2.77% respectively.

Exporters' also gained. Toyota Motor and Honda Motor added 1.66% and 1.67% respectively

In Shanghai, brokerage firms took a beating. Huatai Securities tanked 10.00% while rivals Citic Securities and Haitong Securities lost 9.40% each.

In Hong Kong, Sunac China Holdings lost 5.52%, pulled down by news that it was abandoning a takeover deal for troubled Chinese developer Kaisa.

In Sydney, Newcrest Mining lost 5.38% with spot gold prices hovering near a two-week low, while Fortescue Metals added 2.97%.

Oil and gas explorer MEO Australia jumped 5.26% while rival Tap Oil added 2.86%.

In Seoul, construction firm Samsung C&T lost 3.20% while Samsung's de facto holding company Cheil Industries lost 2.36%.