Asia shares mostly down

HONG KONG - Asia's markets mostly fell Thursday, with investors unable to build on the previous day's advances after the S&P on Wall Street notched up another record.

With few catalysts to drive trade the dollar retreated from seven-month highs against the yen, while the euro clawed back some losses after Germany dampened speculation that the European Central Bank (ECB) would unveil new easing policies.

Tokyo fell 0.48%, or 74.96 points, to 15,459.86, Sydney lost 0.47%, or 26.78 points, to close lower at 5,624.4 and Seoul ended flat, edging up 0.83 points to 2,075.76.

Shanghai gave up 0.62%, or 13.65 points, to end at 2,195.82 while Hong Kong lost 0.71%, or 177.75 points, to 24,741.00.

Kuala Lumpur's main index gained 3.30 points, or 0.18%, to 1,875.68 but Singapore closed down 0.34%, or 11.24 points, at 3,330.22.

Jakarta ended up 0.37%, or 19.23 points, to 5184.48 while Taipei was slightly lower, edging down 7.22 points to 9,478.37 and Manila closed 0.83% lower, shedding 59.76 points to 7,100.70.

Global markets are on a general uptrend as the US economy shows regular signs of getting back on track, in turn sending Wall Street to record highs.

With focus turning to the release of revised US economic growth data for April-June, trade was muted in new York Wednesday, but still positive.

The S&P, which ended above 2,000 for the first time Tuesday, ticked up 0.10 points to another record, while the Dow edged 0.09% higher. The Nasdaq eased a fraction but still sits at a 14-year high.

On currency markets the dollar fetched 103.76 yen in afternoon Asian trade, compared with 103.86 yen in New York and well down from the 104.20 yen levels seen earlier in the week.

The euro bought $1.3198 and 136.97 yen, against $1.3195 and 137.05 yen in New York.

The single currency picked up Wednesday from seven-month lows against the dollar after Germany's Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble downplayed the prospect of the ECB announcing fresh measures to protect the eurozone economy.

The euro had taken a hit at the start of the week, approaching a one-year low against the dollar, after ECB head Mario Draghi hinted the bank could unveil new steps to fend off deflation.

Mr Draghi said last week the bank "will use all available instruments needed to ensure price stability over the medium term".

But Mr Schaeuble said markets "over-interpreted" the remarks.

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