Hong Kong stocks ended more than 1 percent lower on Wednesday after US Democrats launched impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump and the president struck out at China ahead of trade talks next month.

The Hang Seng Index fell 1.3 percent, to 25,945.

On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite Index dropped 1 percent, to 2,955 and the Shenzhen Composite Index tumbled 1.6 percent, to 1,638.

Asian stock markets fell asTrump renewed trade fears with a hard line attack on China.

Tokyo closed down 0.4 percent. Seoul also fell 1.3 percent and Taiwan gave up 0.4 percent while Singapore was trading 1.1 percent lower and Mumbai was down 1.2 percent.

Trump denounced the inquiry as “Witch Hunt garbage” and said he would release a transcript of his phone call with Volodymyr Zelensky.

“The impeachment hearing announcement delivered a knock-out blow to stocks markets already weak at the knees,” Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at Oanda, said in a note.

Oil prices took a hit, with WTI off 0.9 percent and Brent down 1.1 percent following Trump’s tough talk on China and after data indicating a build up in US crude inventories.

“Oil markets continue to sell as risk sentiment remains sour after Trump accused China of currency manipulation, theft of intellectual property and product dumping,” said Stephen Innes, Asia Pacific market strategist at AxiTrader. (AFP)