SYDNEY, Australia - Stocks in Asia fell sharply on Thursday as the death toll from the Wuhan coronavirus rose to seventeen, with 540 cases confirmed worldwide.
Transport stocks fell sharply, particularly airlines, while hotel operators too bore much of the brunt of the selling.
The Chinese yuan fell, while the Shanghai Composite had its biggest one-day fall in eight months.
At the close on Thursday, the benchmark Chinese index was down 44.57 points or 1.46% at 3,016.18.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index shed 478.34 points or 1.69% to 27,862.70.
The Australian All Ordinaries gave up 64.00 points or 0.88% to 7,185.00.
In Japan, the Nikkei 225 dropped 209.96 points or 0.87% to 23,826.39.
On currency markets the euro was unchanged at 1.1084, as was the British pound at 1.3138.
The Japanese yen was substantively higher at 109.56. The Swiss franc was unmoved at 0.9685.
The Canadian dollar eased a few basis points to 1.3162. The Australian dollar rose a touch to 0.6873.
The New Zealand dollar was little changed at 0.6595.
Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow Jones index was down 9.77 points or 0.03% at 29,186.27.
The Standard and Poor's 500 was pretty much unchanged, ahead just 0.96 of a point or 0.03% at 3,321.75.
The Nasdaq Composite gained 12.96 points or 0.14% to 9,383.277.