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Asian markets follow Wall Street's decline

Asian markets follow Wall Street's decline

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index had dropped 3 percent by early afternoon Wednesday. Australia's All Ordinaries index was down less than 1 percent. South Korea's KOSPI index slipped a little more than 1 percent. Japan's stock market was closed for a holiday.

The market declines followed a disappointing day on Wall Street Tuesday. The Dow Jones industrial average slid 4.6 percent. The Standard & Poor's 500 index dropped 4.9 percent. The Nasdaq composite fell 4.2 percent.

U.S. stocks dropped before Geithner on Tuesday outlined the Obama administration's plan to overhaul the bank bailout plan and continued to plunge after the treasury secretary's announcement.

Investors had hoped to see a plan that would address two of the biggest problems in the banking sector -- the toxic assets keeping banks from lending and the shortage of capital at major institutions at a time when losses are expected to rise sharply. But many thought Geithner's plan lacked specifics.

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