Asian stock markets lower after US jobs report

Asian stock markets were mostly lower on Monday as a disappointing U.S. jobs report late last week sent Wall Street lower.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index dropped less than 0.1 percent to 23,678.22. China’s Shanghai Composite index was lower by 0.2 percent to 2,831.60.

South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.4 percent to 2,078.77, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was narrowly down by 3.6 points to 4,701.70. Indexes in Singapore, Taiwan, Indonesia and the Philippines were also down.

Bucking the trend was the New Zealand exchange, up by 01. percent to 3,320.78.

Financial markets in Japan were closed Monday for a national holiday.

The Nikkei 225 stock average, Asia’s largest, rose Friday to a fresh eight-month high of 10,541.04.

On Friday, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 22.55 points, or 0.2 percent, to close at 11,674.76. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 2.35, or 0.2 percent, to 1,271.50. The Nasdaq composite index fell 6.72, or 0.3 percent, to 2,703.17.

The U.S. Labor Department said Friday that employers added 103,000 jobs in December, less than analysts expected. The unemployment rate, meanwhile, fell to 9.4 percent, down from 9.8 percent in November and the lowest rate in 19 months. The decline came partly because many people gave up looking for work.

In currencies, the dollar was trading at 83 yen from 83.03 yen Friday. The euro stood at $1.2921 from $1.2934.

Benchmark oil for February delivery rose $1.49 to $89.52 a barrel in Singapore in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 30 cents to settle at $88.03 on Friday.