Asia stocks extend losses

On Thursday, Asian shares managed to extend their losses on dismal earnings from technology giant Apple, while the greenback firmed but remained quite shy of this week's almost nine-month peaks.

An overnight dip in crude prices combined with downbeat sentiment over Apple's +earnings had ensured a broad sell off in the technology sector.

In Asia financial markets have followed on from this poor lead this morning and it looks set to provoke a weak start for European markets this morning.

CMC Markets expected the UK’s FTSE 100, French CAC 40 as well as German DAX to start moderately lower.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside Japan dropped 0.9% during afternoon trade.

Contributing to the subdued sentiment, data revealed that profit growth in China's industrial companies slowed the previous month as several sectors demonstrated poor activity.

Meanwhile, the Chinese Yuan notched fresh six-year minimums on Thursday after the PBOC set a weaker midpoint.

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