Japanese Market Drifts Lower On Wall Street Cues, Stronger Yen

By RTT News, 
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(RTTNews.com) - The Japanese stock market is trading lower on Tuesday, with a stronger yen and the overnight weak close on Wall Street hurting sentiment.

Shares from steel, non-ferrous metals and insurance sections are among the notable losers.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index is down 94.6 points or 0.6 percent at 15,284.8, after declining to 15,225.1 earlier.

T&D Holdings, NKSJ Holdings, Tokio Marine Holdings, Tokyu Fudosan Holdings Corp., Advantest Corp. ( ATE ), Marui Group, Japan Steel Works, MS&AD Insurance Group Holdings, Hino Motors, Unitika and Mitsui Chemicals are declining 2 to 3.5 percent.

Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp., Shinsei Bank, Konica Minolta, Nomura Holdings, Dai-ichi Life Insurance, Sumitomo Chemical, Chubu Electric Power and Kansai Electric Power are all lower by 1.5 to 2 percent.

Panasonic Corp. (PC) will reportedly outsource production of system chips to Intel, aiming to shift away from consumer electronics. The stock is down by about 0.5 percent.

Among the gainers, Casio Computer is up nearly 6 percent after the company announced that it will buy back about 12.5 billion yen of shares.

Nippon Suisan Kaisha is advancing more than 5 percent and Toho Zinc is rising 3.2 percent. Sapporo Holdings, Sumitomo Metal Mining, Nisshin Steel, Nippon Telegraph & Telephone Corp., Astellas Pharma, GS Yuasa Corp. and Shionogi & Co. are up 1 to 2 percent.

On the economic front, Japan had a current account surplus of 522.8 billion yen in May, the Ministry of Finance said on Tuesday. That topped forecasts for a surplus of 429.9 billion yen, and was up from 187.4 billion yen in April.

The trade balance reflected a deficit of 675.9 billion yen - also beating expectations for a shortfall of 822.5 billion yen following the 780.4 billion yen deficit in the previous month.

Exports were up 2.0 percent on year to 5.718 trillion yen, while imports eased 0.4 percent to 6.394 trillion yen.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar traded in the upper 101 yen range in early deals in Tokyo. The yen is currently trading at 101.77 to the U.S. dollar, against Monday's close of 102.6 yen per dollar.

Among other markets in the Asia-Pacific region, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Australia, Singapore, New Zealand and South Korea are all trading weak. Indonesia is modestly higher, while Malaysia and Taiwan are up marginally.

On Wall Street, stocks ended lower on Monday, partly due to profit taking with some traders cashing in on the recent strength. Trading activity was somewhat subdued.

The Dow declined 44.1 points or 0.3 percent to 17,024.2, the Nasdaq slid 34.4 points or 0.8 percent to 4,451.5 and the S&P 500 dropped 7.8 points or 0.4 percent to 1,977.6.

Major European markets too ended notably lower on Monday. While the French CAC 40 index tumbled by 1.4 percent, the German DAX index dropped by 1 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 index slid by 0.6 percent.

U.S. crude oil futures tumbled to their lowest in a month on Monday. Crude for August delivery ended down $0.53 cents or 0.5 percent at $103.53 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest settlement since June 6.

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This article appears in: News Headlines

Referenced Stocks: ATE , INTC , NMR , NTT

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