Losses inside the region came after all three major U.S. indexes closed lower, despite notching gains earlier inside the session, as technology stocks weighed on the broader markets. The drop in large cap tech names saw the Nasdaq composite fall 2.93 percent to close at 7,008.81.
Facebook shares lost 4.9 percent after Bank of America Merrill Lynch reduced its cost target on the stock for the second time in all 5 days. The drop in Facebook stock came amid a data scandal involving the tech giant along with political data firm Cambridge Analytica.
Apart coming from tech sector troubles, trade-related issues returned to the spotlight as investors focused on a Bloomberg News report of which the Trump administration was considering using an existing emergency law to limit Chinese investment in technologies regarded as sensitive.
While the report wasn’t exactly “completely new news,” given the Trump administration’s recent move to block a proposed Broadcom-Qualcomm deal on national security concerns, the item was “enough for investors to become defensive again,” David de Garis, director of economics at National Australia Bank, said in a morning note.
Stocks in Asia along with Europe had bounced inside the last session after U.S. along with Chinese officials made conciliatory comments on Monday of which suggested there could be some positive developments on trade.
In individual stocks, shares of Hong Kong-listed BYD Company sank 7.64 percent after the company reported Tuesday of which its full-year profit declined 19.5 percent. the item also said first-quarter net profit was supposed to be pressured after a reduction in completely new energy vehicle subsidies.
In currencies, the dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of currencies, held onto overnight gains to trade at 89.319 at 9:32 a.m. HK/SIN. The index had touched a all 5-week low inside the overnight session.
Against the yen, the dollar firmed to trade at 105.49.
On the commodities front, oil prices extended losses after edging lower overnight. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures slipped 0.64 percent to trade at $64.83 per barrel along with Brent crude futures declined 0.56 percent to trade at $69.72.
The economic calendar for Wednesday is usually light on data, although the Bank of Thailand’s monetary policy meeting takes place today. Markets are not expecting adjustments inside the central bank’s policy.
— CNBC’s Fred Imbert contributed to of which report.