Business / Financial Markets | TSE DATA & REPORT

Nikkei drops on stronger yen

JIJI

Stocks fell on the Tokyo Stock Exchange Tuesday, as sentiment was battered by the yen’s appreciation.

The 225-issue Nikkei average fell 150.65 points, or 0.69 percent, to end at 21,535.25, after rising 42.37 points Friday.

The Topix index of all first-section issues closed down 7.57 points, or 0.48 percent, at 1,568.74. It lost 2.32 points the previous trading day.

The Tokyo market was closed Monday for Marine Day.

After getting off to a weak start, the market sank deeper into negative territory in the morning, weighed down by selling of wide-ranging issues amid the yen’s advance against the dollar and other major currencies. Shanghai stocks’ sluggishness also dampened investor sentiment, brokers said.

In early afternoon trading, however, Tokyo stocks stopped falling thanks to apparent buying of exchange-traded funds by the Bank of Japan, some sources said.

Both price indicators moved narrowly for the rest of the afternoon session.

“Players are unwilling to trade actively before seeing earnings reports to be released shortly by export-oriented Japanese companies,” said Masahiro Ichikawa, senior strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui DS Asset Management Co. He was referring to the disappointing March-May results announced by Yaskawa Electric on Thursday and a subsequent increase in concerns among investors over a slowdown in the Chinese economy.

Yutaka Miura, senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities Co., said that participants refrained from buying to brace for a possible Wall Street downturn on Tuesday now that a U.S. interest rate cut has been priced in.

Falling issues far outnumbered rising ones 1,302 to 752 in the TSE’s first section, while 96 issues were unchanged.

Volume increased to 1.040 billion shares from Friday’s 1.029 billion shares.

Oil firms, including Idemitsu and JXTG, fell on lower New York crude oil futures.

Yamato Holdings fell 1.40 percent in response to a news report that the parcel delivery firm is expected to post an operating loss for April-June.

Among other major losers were technology investor SoftBank Group and clothing store chain Fast Retailing.

On the other hand, Toyota rose 1.30 percent, helped by a media report on China’s consideration of favorable treatments for hybrid vehicles.

Also on the positive side were cosmetics maker Shiseido and Pan Pacific International Holdings, which runs Don Quijote discount stores.

In index futures trading on the Osaka Exchange, the key September contract on the Nikkei average fell 130 points to end at 21,500.