Asian close down despite US closing highs

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Nikkei 225 Index

Last Updated at 26 Feb 2018, 01:45 GMT Nikkei 225 one month chart
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22132.25 +

Stock markets in Asia closed lower on Tuesday, despite markets in the US, where both the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 closed at all-time highs.

Australia's benchmark S&P/ASX 200 finished 0.39% lower at 5902.90.

The index reversed early gains after the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) announced it would keep its benchmark interest rate on hold at 2.25%.

Many traders were expecting a cut in rates and the Australia dollar strengthened after the RBA's move.

RBA governor Glenn Stevens said: "At today's meeting the board judged that, having eased monetary policy at the previous meeting, it was appropriate to hold interest rates steady for the time being."

Elsewhere in Asia

In Tokyo, the benchmark Nikkei 225 closed a touch lower, losing 11 points to close at 18,815.

Trading of shares of Japan's struggling electronics giant Sharp was halted temporarily on Tuesday morning after a media report said the firm was preparing to seek aid from its lenders.

The company said it had not been the source of the report, however, and that it had made no decisions around restructuring.

Despite the reassurance, its Japan-listed shares closed 3.5% lower.

Sharp had said it was likely to post its third annual net loss in four years as it struggles with its business in China.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng was down 0.7% at 24,702.

On mainland China, the Shanghai Composite index was down 2.2% at 3,263 as investors worried about a glut of new share offers.

In Korea, the Kospi share index was up 0.2% closing at 2,001.

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