Asian equity markets plunge on opening

SINGAPORE, Feb 28, 2007 (AFP) – Singapore share prices opened 4.82 percent lower Wednesday, in line with continued falls in regional markets. The Straits Times Index opened down 155.89 points or 4.82 percent at 3,076.13.

Blue chips were among the big losers, including Singapore Airlines, down 4.32 percent and Singapore Press Holdings down 4.37 percent in early trade.

Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp was 5.17 percent lower and Venture Corp was down 4.93 percent.
Najeeb Jarhom, head of research at Fraser Securities, said that since Monday the Index had dropped about seven percent, compared with a mid-year correction of about 15 percent spread over about six weeks last year.

“I think this mini-crash could be over quickly,” he said.

World stock markets fell sharply Tuesday in the worst selloff in years as concern mounted about a US economic slowdown and the health of the Chinese share markets.

Chinese share prices saw their steepest one-day drop in a decade Tuesday, tumbling 8.84 percent in Shanghai amid concerns the market was overdone after soaring to historical highs, dealers said. .