Asian stocks fell, after U.S. markets posted the biggest weekly drop in three years, amid concern that a tumbling oil price signals weakness in the outlook for global economic growth.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped 0.6 percent to 136.60 as of 9:01 a.m. in Tokyo, headed for a 1 1/2-month low, before markets opened in Hong Kong and China. The Standard & Poors 500 Index tumbled 1.6 percent Dec. 12, extending losses in the final hour, as material shares led the retreat. The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank 3.8 percent on the week, its biggest weekly drop since November 2011.

About $2 trillion was erased from the value of equities worldwide last week as oil prices tumbled, raising concern over the strength of the global economy. West Texas Intermediate crude continued its slump today, sliding 1.9 percent to $56.69 a barrel after losing 12 percent last week.

China is likely to see economic expansion next year decelerate to 7.1 percent as a slowdown in real estate investment continues, according to Ma Jun, chief economist of the Peoples Bank of Chinas research center. Futures on Hong Kongs Hang Seng Index fell 0.5 percent in their most recent trading session, while contracts on the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland companies listed in the city fell 0.9 percent.

Source : Bloomberg