Beijing, China (BBN)-Shares in Asia were in negative territory early on Wednesday as investor sentiment continued to be rattled by oil prices and concerns over growth in China.
West Texas Intermediate fell below $28 a barrel for the first time since September 2003, reports BBC.
Brent Crude prices made a slight recovery, but that did little to boost investor sentiment.
The Nikkei 225 was down 1.62 per cent at 16,734.24 points in mid-morning trade.
The International Energy Agency said on Tuesday that with the return of Iranian oil, the market “could drown” in oversupply.
Prices of oil have fallen by more than 70 per cent in the last 18 months.
In China, markets were also down in morning trade after a positive day on Tuesday.
Markets there welcomed the country’s latest growth numbers, which were in line with expectations.
The world’s second-biggest economy grew by 6.9 per cent in 2015, compared with 7.3 per cent a year earlier, marking the country’s slowest growth in a quarter of a century.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was down 2.26 per cent at 19,188.8 points, while the mainland’s Shanghai Composite was down 0.21 per cent at 3,002.22 after moving briefly into positive territory earlier.
In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 was down 0.64 per cent, dragged lower by energy-related shares.
In South Korea, the benchmark Kospi index was down 1.04 per cent at 1,870.07 points.