Hong Kong stocks recovered to close higher on Thursday after an early slump.

The Hang Seng Index ended 0.76 percent higher at 25,495.

Among the market heavyweights, HSBC eased 0.73 percent to HK$56.8 and Tencent shed 2.8 percent to $330.4

Across the border, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.25 percent to close at 2,815. The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China’s second exchange climbed 0.53 percent to 1,517.

But most Asian markets fell after US stocks suffered its worst day of the year overnight, as fears of a global recession mounted with investors fleeing equities.

Tokyo’s key Nikkei index nosedived nearly 2 percent at the open before recovering slightly to finish 1.2 percent down.

Sydney plummeted nearly 3 percent while Singapore shed 1.2 percent.

“The Japanese stock market is sliding against the backdrop of sharp falls in US shares,” Okasan Online Securities said in a note.

“Worries over the US economic recession grew, while negative economic data for China and Germany also prompted investors to downgrade their views on the global economy,” Mizuho Securities added.

The yield on the 10-year US Treasury note briefly slid below the yield on the two-year bond, a so-called “inversion” that has been a reliable harbinger of recession for decades.

Coming on the back of an intensifying China-US trade war that shows no signs of resolution, the flight to bonds signalled the growing fears of a global recession.

“US-China trade tensions have metastasised into something more sinister by affecting global growth to such a large degree that bond markets are pricing-in a high probability of a worldwide recession,” warned Stephen Innes, managing partner at VM Markets. (AFP)