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Foreign investors were net buyers of Japanese stocks for the eighth consecutive week last week.

International investors’ buying excess on the Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya bourses totaled 57 billion yen, compared with 92.41 billion yen the previous week, according to a weekly industry report. Foreign investors haven’t been net buyers over a consecutive period of this length since prior to the fourth week of November 1999.

Their buying excess in the eight weeks amounted to 1.07 trillion yen.

After chalking up a buying excess of 196 billion yen in the fourth week of January, however, nonresident investors’ net purchases visibly narrowed, indicating they became cautious about increasing their Japanese portfolios amid concern over tumbles in New York share prices, brokerage officials said. Among domestic investors, long-term credit, city and regional banks were net sellers for the fourth straight week, with their selling excess at 188.7 billion yen, compared with 130.1 billion yen the previous week.

With the end of the fiscal year drawing near, the industrial web of cross-shareholdings continued to unravel.

Individual investors, on the other hand, were net buyers for the second week running, with their buying excess at 10.55 billion yen, including cash and debit balances, compared with 32.82 billion yen. They continued hunting for bargains as many shares dropped to attractive price levels, brokerage officials said.

Nonfinancial businesses turned net buyers for the first time in 13 weeks, with their buying excess at 160.81 billion yen, a turnaround from net sales of 49.998 billion yen the previous week.

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