Banks put pressure on Asian shares

Banks put pressure on Asian shares

Tokyo: Asian share markets struggled to hold early gains on Monday, with bank shares falling as tech stocks gained, while the dollar held steady on the yen and hovered near a three-month high on the euro.

Shares in Hong Kong slid as financial and property stocks fell on concern China would take steps to cool the property market, while banks such as HSBC eased on worries they may need to make provision against exposure to debt in Dubai. Debt-ridden conglomerate Dubai World met key creditors on Monday and said it will continue working with creditors to reach a standstill agreement on its borrowing in an orderly way.

Seoul shares ended 0.2% lower, with banks including KB Financial Group weighing but gains in technology exporters such as LG Electronics lent support.

“Banks are under pressure amid recent news flows pointing to a tighter regulatory environment, potentially worsening net interest margins," said Kwak Joong-bo, a market analyst at Hana Daetoo Securities.

Banks face having to set aside more funds or raise fresh capital in as little as three years, according to proposals by a global regulatory body that could change the way they do business.

Anthony DiPaola of Bloomberg contributed to this story.