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Chinese stocks fall 5.5%, other Asian markets down

Chinese stocks fall 5.5%, other Asian markets down

China’s main stock market index fell more than 5% on Friday after two securities firms said they are under investigation for possible misconduct. The Shanghai composite index closed 5.5% lower at 3,436.30, after falling more than 6% earlier. It came after major brokerages CITIC Securities and Guosen Securities said they were under investigation. A third brokerage, Haitong Securities Ltd., later issued a similar announcement.Better Expected Trade Data Reported By China

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index dropped 1.9% and Japan’s Nikkei 225 index lost 0.3%. U.S. stock futures were higher Friday. European shares were mostly up. The New York Stock Exchange was closed for the Thanksgiving holiday Thursday.

A number of Chinese securities executives have been detained or questioned by regulators after a plunge in share prices that began in early June. The investigations were seen by many as an attempt by the ruling Communist Party to deflect blame for a market bubble that it engineered. Friday’s announcements were the first that brokerages were being investigated.