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Chinese tech stocks fall; property developer Soho China plunges 36% as deal falls through

SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific largely slipped in Monday morning trade, with stocks in Hong Kong leading losses.

Hong Kong-listed shares of Alibaba dropped 3.04% following a Financial Times report that Beijing wants to break up Ant Group’s Alipay and force the creation of a separate loans app.

Other Chinese tech stocks also declined, with Tencent falling 2.33% while Meituan slipped 3.39%. The Hang Seng Tech index dropped 1.74%.

Chinese property developer Soho China plunged 36% in the morning after a takeover deal by Blackstone Group fell through. Soho China said in a filing on Friday that Blackstone has decided not to go through with its $3 billion bid to buy the developer.

Hong Kong’s broader Hang Seng index dropped 1.5%. Mainland Chinese stocks edged higher, with the Shanghai composite shedding 0.15% while the Shenzhen component declined 0.156%.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 edged 0.25% lower while the Topix index shed 0.16%.

Shares of automakers Toyota and Honda fell 2.37% and 1.84% respectively. The two firms criticized a U.S. House electric vehicle tax plan that would benefit Detroit’s Big Three automakers, according to a Reuters report.

South Korea’s Kospi dipped 0.22%.

The S&P/ASX 200 in Australia edged 0.14% higher.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.74% lower.

Looking ahead for the week, the U.S. consumer price index for August is set to be out on Tuesday, while retail sales figures stateside are expected Thursday. A slew of Chinese economic data, including retail sales and industrial production for August, is also set to be out on Thursday.

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 92.665 after a recent decline from above 92.7.

The Japanese yen traded at 109.95 per dollar, stronger than levels around 110.4 seen against the greenback last week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7358 following its slide last week from above $0.744.

Oil prices were higher in the morning of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures up 0.7% to $73.43 per barrel. U.S. crude futures advanced 0.76% to $70.25 per barrel.

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