Business / Financial Markets

Tokyo stocks turn marginally lower

Jiji

Tokyo stocks suffered a minor setback Tuesday, with selling slightly outpacing buying following the recent bull run.

The Nikkei 225 average fell 24.18 points, or 0.12 percent, to end at 20,366.48 after jumping 211.57 points Monday.

The Topix, which covers all issues on the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange, ended 3.90 points, or 0.26 percent, lower at 1,476.72. It rose 22.34 points Monday.

The market got off to a weak start after a three-session rally during which the Nikkei soared over 750 points.

The market showed resilience each time it was hit by a wave of selling, thanks in part to technology-oriented stocks. They were bolstered by a rise in the Nasdaq composite index despite a downturn by the Dow Jones Industrial Average on Monday, brokers said.

The Nikkei stayed in positive terrain for most of the afternoon, aided by hopes for resumption of economic activities curtailed by the coronavirus pandemic, they said.

Buyers were particularly encouraged by media reports that the government plans to terminate the state of emergency in 34 of the 47 prefectures on Thursday, Yutaka Miura, senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities Co., said.

But selling was as active as buying amid growing concerns over the risk of “a second wave” of coronavirus infections in countries that are easing restrictions,such as China, Germany and South Korea, a major brokerage house official said.

“Falls in U.S. index futures (in off-hours trading) prevented the market from extending the rally,” Miura said.

On the first section, losers outnumbered winners 1,244 to 840 while 87 issues were unchanged. Volume fell to 1.241 billion shares from 1.313 billion Monday.

A sharp downward revision by Toyota to its operating profit projection for this business year ignited selling of its shares.

Tire maker Bridgestone, mobile phone carrier SoftBank and department store operator Isetan Mitsukoshi fell after releasing dismal earnings numbers.

Among other losers were clothing store chain Fast Retailing and automaker Honda.

Meanwhile, buoyant technology names included chip test device maker Advantest and parts suppliers Murata Manufacturing and Taiyo Yuden.

Eisai, Takeda and other drug stocks attracted defensive demand.

Also on the positive side were daily goods maker Kao and technology investor SoftBank Group.

Coronavirus banner