Asian stocks tumble amid Europe debt worries

By the Associated Press | September 11, 2011 | 9:50 PM EDT

TOKYO (AP) — Asian stock markets are sharply lower in early trading amid intensifying worries about Europe's debt problems. Sentiment also soured after Wall Street sustained heavy losses before the weekend.

Japan's Nikkei 225 stock average fell 2.1 percent to 8,550.45, hitting six-month intraday lows.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index shed 3 percent to 19,264.68. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 lost almost 3 percent to 4,069.8.

Benchmarks in New Zealand and Singapore also retreated.

In currencies, the dollar was trading at 77.49 yen. The euro stood at $1.35946.

Financial markets in South Korea, China and Taiwan were closed Monday for national holidays.