By RTT News, September 25, 2013, 10:45:00 PM EDT
(RTTNews.com) - The Japanese stock market is trading sharply lower on Thursday, with investors pressing sales almost across the board, tracking weak cues from Wall Street where the major averages ended lower overnight amid fears of a government shutdown.
Automobile, banking, mining, non-ferrous metals, insurance and chemicals stocks are among the prominent losers.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index, which tumbled to 14,410.5, is currently trading at 14,498.4, down 122.1 points or 0.8 percent from its previous close.
Advantest Corp. ( ATE ) is down more than 6 percent. Hitachi Zosen, Matsui Securities, Nippon Electric Glass, Sapporo Holdings, Shizuoka Bank, Sumitomo Corp. and Mitsui Chemicals are down 3 to 4 percent.
Sumitomo Chemical, NTT DoCoMo, Japan Tobacco, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group ( MTU ), Mizuho Financial ( MFG ), Aozora Bank, SMFG and Shionogi are also trading notably lower.
Shares of Tokyo Electric Power are up 4 percent amid hopes the utility's nuclear reactors were moving closer to being restarted.
Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Tokyo Dome, Softbank Corp. and Shiseido Co. are up 2 to 3 percent. Nippon Sheet Glass, Nippon Suisan Kaisha, Pioneer Corp., Nippon Light Metal Holdings, Kobe Steel, Oji Holdings, Sharp Corp., Showa Shell KK and Hitach are trading higher by 1 to 2 percent.
In the currency market, the U.S. dollar traded in the lower 98 yen-range in early deals in Tokyo. The yen is currently trading at 98.32 to the U.S. dollar.
Among other markets in the Asia-Pacific region, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Taiwan are trading notably lower. Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia and New Zealand are down marginally, while South Korea is up slightly.
On Wall Street, stocks ended lower on Wednesday after a choppy ride, amid lingering concerns about the possibility of a government shutdown at the end of the month.
The major averages all ended the day in the red, with the Dow and the S&P 500 closing lower for the fifth straight day. The Dow declined 61.3 points or 0.4 percent to 15,273.3, the Nasdaq edged down 7.2 points or 0.2 percent to 3,761.1 and the S&P 500 dipped 4.6 points or 0.3 percent to 1,692.8.
Major European markets ended mostly unchanged on Wednesday. While the French CAC 40 index and the German DAX index recovered from their mid-day lows to end the day roughly flat, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 index dipped by 0.3 percent.
U.S. crude oil ended lower for a fifth straight session on Wednesday, after a report from the Energy Information Administration showed crude stockpiles in the U.S. to have risen more than expected last week.
Crude for November delivery dropped $0.47 or 0.5 percent to close at $102.66 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
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