J. Menton | December 5 2012 12:18 EST
Asian shares were flat on Wednesday over fear the U.S. could fall into recession if $600 billion in automatic tax hikes and spending cuts go into effect in January.
The HSBC Purchasing Managers Index for China's services sector released on Wednesday showed the index slipped to 52.1 in November from October's 53.5.
Hong Kong shares .HSI rose 1.2 percent, Australian shares .AXJO gained 0.3 percent and Japan's Nikkei stock average .N225 was up 0.1 percent.
Wall Street remained mixed on Tuesday as investors stayed concerned about U.S. lawmaker’s ability to reach an agreement to the year-end budget “fiscal cliff” crisis.
Republicans and Democrats continue to debate back-and-forth after House Speaker John Boehner on Monday proposed a $2.2 trillion counteroffer to U.S. President Barack Obama, arguing the plan would reduce the deficit without raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans. But Democrats argue the proposal contained few specifics and would destroy U.S. jobs.
No U.S. economic data was scheduled for release on Tuesday, but investors were still shaking off dismal U.S. manufacturing data from Monday. U.S. economic indicators issued on Wednesday include the ADP employment report on private payrolls for November, third-quarter productivity released by the Commerce Department, the ISM services index for November and factory orders for October.
President Obama is scheduled to address the Business Roundtable’s quarterly CEO meeting on Wednesday.