Brexit worries bring Asian shares down

Asian shares were mostly lower Monday morning amid Britain’s worries, and Takata stock dropped in Tokyo after the air bag maker agreed to a guilty plea in the U.S. over massive recalls.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 was down 0.9 per cent to 19,111.90 in morning trading. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 added 0.4 per cent to 5,746.40. South Korea’s Kospi lost 0.5 per cent at 2,067.51. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slipped 0.7 per cent to 22,768.55, while the Shanghai Composite dropped 1 per cent to 3,080.67.

British Prime Minister Theresa May is set to deliver a speech outlining her vision of Britain’s post-EU future, and market players are worried what she says may indicate a “hard” approach to the nation’s exit. The PM’s office has said she will call for a “truly global Britain” that is more open to the world when she sets out plans for negotiations with the European Union.

Japanese air bag maker Takata Corp. stock suffered after it agreed in the U.S. last week to a guilty plea and a $1 billion (£0.83 billion) fines in a scheme to conceal a deadly defect in millions of air bags. Takata shares dropped nearly 10 per cent in morning trading. Three former Takata executives were also indicted. Automakers have recalled 42 million cars equipped with 69 million Takata air bag inflators in the U.S., the largest automotive recall in U.S. history.

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