Asian markets dived across the board in Thursday trading, following Wall Street's lead after the Nasdaq 100 suffered its worst day of trading for seven years.
The big hit to American markets came as US President Donald Trump displayed his trademark tact in stating that the Federal Reserve had “gone crazy” with plans for higher interest rates.
Banny Lam, head of research at CEB International Investment Corp, told Bloomberg that the volatility seen on what some analysts are already calling 'black Thursday' was “just a beginning”.
“The U.S. tech bubble may take a while to burst and we are facing many external uncertainties – trade wars, risks in emerging markets currencies and oil price. And people should also watch yuan closely,” said Lam
Analysts at Axioma said that the Asian market “is like a leveraged play on the US market and the global trade situation,” and that this would not change until Beijing and Washington reached an agreement in their ongoing trade-war.
Japan's Nikkei 225 fell by 3.89% to 22,590.86 with Daiwa House Industry the lone gainer as stocks dropped across all sectors, while the yen fell 0.02% against the US dollar to JPY112.29.
Leading the pack of fallers were Nippon Sheet Glass, Fanuc , Shiseido and JXTG Holdings, which all fell by more than 6.5%.
Major Japanese exporters Toyota, Nintendo and Sony were also caught out, each dropping by more than 2%.
Chihiro Ota of SMBC Nikko Securities, said: “There were particular concerns about a slowdown of the Chinese economy and moves to avoid risk were taken around the world. The next area that will be the focus of attention will be company financial reports that will come out in large numbers in the near future in Japan and the United States.”
China's Shanghai Composite index dived 5.22% to 2,583.46, its lowest level since 2014 and down 20% throughout the year, while the tech-heavy Shenzhen Composite fell even further, dropping 6.45% to 1,293.90.
The biggest losers were Anhui Wanwei Updated High-tech Material Industry, Heilongjiang Interchina Water Treatment and Chongqing Dima Industry, which all gave back around 10.1% as investors panicked.
Stephen Innes, head of trading for Asia Pacific at Oanda, said: “The US equity bloodbath is taking no prisoners in Asia as a sea of red greets investors at the open as equity deleveraging and liquidation intensifies. If the Feds are crazy, this market reaction is bordering on insanity, as so many negative cross-currents collide that is merely impossible to find a glint of optimism.”
The Hong Kong Hang Seng Index dropped too, falling 3.54% to 25,266.37 as the indexes tech stocks suffered particularly badly as Sunny Optical, AAC Technologies and index heavyweight Tencent each fell by more than 6%.
The latter company, a titan of gaming and social media in China, has also struggled recently as regulators have halted the release of new games as part of an apparent crackdown on internet addiction and content deemed inappropriate.
South Korea's Kospi was down 4.44% at 2,129.67 on the back of the US sell-off, with the index having already been struggling amid pessimism about the Korean economy and corporate performance on the peninsula.
After eight sessions of consecutive drops things came to a head on Thursday as foreign investors dumped 500bn won worth of Kospi index shares, up from 230bn on Wednesday.
Bellweather Samsung Electronics fell by around 4.8%, while other major players such as Hyundai, Posco and Celltrion all fell by more than 3%.
Brent Crude prices fell by 1.93% to $81.52 and WTI dropped by 1.87% to $71.83.
The Australian S&P/ASX 200 fell 2.74% to 5,883.76 in what was the most muted performance of major markets in the region.
The country's mining stocks were subjected to drops, with BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto both having fallen by more than 3% by the close of trade.
To round off the losses seen across the entire region, New Zealand's S&P/NZX 50 dipped by 3.64% to 8,721.20 as all but one of its listed stocks fell in what was the index's ninth consecutive decline.
A2 Milk led the market lower with a drop of 11%, having now dropped by 26% since a share sale by new chief executive Jayne Hrdlicka spooked investors, while A2's primary supplier Synlait Milk dropped by over 5%.
The Australian dollar was down 0.46% against the greenback at AU$1.41, while New Zealand's dollar dropped 0.55% to NZ$1.54.