PV Business Desk : Concerns about the reimposition of virus lockdowns, stalled vaccine trials and dimming hopes of new US stimulus any time soon weighed on most Asian markets Thursday.

Regional investors tracked another sell-off in New York, where all three main indexes turned negative after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin warned that while talks continued, Republicans and Democrats were still “far apart” on a rescue package.

While the broad view is that a new spending package will get passed eventually, the comments reinforced expectations that there will be nothing before next month’s presidential and congressional elections.

“This has been an ongoing drama,” Paul Nolte, at Kingsview Investment Management, said. “The latest twist I heard is nothing is going to get done until the election. That’s why I think you’re getting the market selling off a little bit.”

However, analysts said traders were taking comfort from the possibility that Joe Biden and the Democrats will win the White House and both houses of Congress, paving the way for a bigger stimulus than anything that could be agreed before the vote.

Adding to the downbeat mood on trading floors is the surge in coronavirus infections in Europe, which is forcing governments to revert to tough containment measures that observers fear could deliver a blow to a tentative recovery from national lockdowns earlier this year.

Edited By-SPT