Asian markets down on FOMC and Chinese property price controls (Barcelona) - Most Asian equity indexes edged lower on Thursday, possibly due to a lack of consensus on extending US QE by key FOMC members and the introduction of Chinese property price controls. Mainland China's Shanghai Composite shed -2.84%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell -1.77%, South Korea's Kospi dropped -0.47% and Japan's Nikkei Stock Average eased -1.39%.

Futures for the German DAX 30 and the French CAC 40 are signaling a lower opening by -0.13% ahead of a preliminary release of February Markit PMI data in both countries and in the Eurozone.