Asia stocks down after Wall Street trading resumes

Asia stocks down after Wall Street trading resumes

Asian stock markets fell Thursday after trading resumed on Wall Street following a two-day suspension due to superstorm Sandy.

The New York Stock Exchange was closed Monday and Tuesday, and the city that is the world's financial center is struggling to get back to work as it deals with storm damage. The trading floor ran on backup generators because of a power outage in lower Manhattan.

U.S. stocks barely budged Wednesday, with the Dow Jones industrial average and the S&P 500 each moving less than a tenth of percentage point.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 index fell 0.2 percent to 8,909.81. Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost nearly 0.2 percent to 21,605.81. South Korea's Kospi was down 1 percent at 1,892.82. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.9 percent to 4,477.40.

Benchmarks in Singapore, Taiwan and Indonesia also fell. Mainland Chinese shares rose.

Investors will be keeping an eye on a raft of U.S. economic news to be released over the next few days, culminating in a comprehensive jobs report for October at the end of the week. This month's figures may have a more notable impact, coming ahead of Tuesday's closely fought U.S. presidential election.

Benchmark oil for December delivery fell 12 cents to $86.12 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 56 cents to finish at $86.24 per barrel in New York on Wednesday.

In currencies, the euro fell to $1.2954 from $1.2962 late Wednesday in New York. The dollar rose to 79.90 yen from 79.76 yen.