Japanese Market Modestly Lower, Paring Early Gains

(RTTNews) - The Japanese stock market is modestly lower after paring early gains on Wednesday, extending the sharp 3.1 percent loss of the previous session, with the benchmark Nikkei index above the 28,400 level, following the negative cues overnight from Wall Street on inflation fears. Traders also continue to be cautious amid the accelerating daily coronavirus infection rates caused by highly contagious variants of the virus.

According to the Health Ministry, the number of COVID-19 patients with severe symptoms in Japan rose to a record 1,176. The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is losing 152.77 points or 0.53 percent to 28,455.82, after touching a high of 28,831.03 and hitting a low of 28,329.01 in early trades. Japanese stocks closed sharply lower on Tuesday.

Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is losing more than 3 percent, while Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing is up more than 1 percent. Among automakers, Honda is losing more than 2 percent and Toyota is down almost 1 percent.

In the tech space, Tokyo Electron is losing almost 2 percent, Advantest is edging down 0.3 percent and Screen Holdings is edging down 0.1 percent. In the banking sector, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial are losing almost 1 percent each, while Mizuho Financial is down more than 1 percent.

Among the major exporters, Panasonic, Sony and Mitsubishi Electric are edging down 0.3 percent each, while Canon is losing more than 1 percent.

Among the other major losers, Mitsui E&S Holdings is plunging almost 14 percent, Pacific Metals in losing more than 13 percent, Nissan Motor is down more than 12 percent and Mitsui Mining & Smelting is declining more than 10 percent. Kobe Steel is down more than 9 percent, Yokogawa Electric is losing almost 9 percent and Marui Group is declining more than 8 percent, while Amada and Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha are down almost 7 percent each.

Conversely, Yamaha, Sharp and Nichirei are gaining almost 5 percent each, while Tosoh is adding more than 4 percent. Hitachi, Tokai Carbon, Nissan Chemical and NSK are up more than 2 percent each. In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the higher 108 yen-range on Wednesday.

On Wall Street, stocks moved mostly lower during trading on Tuesday, extending the pullback seen over the course of the previous session. The Nasdaq hit its worst intraday level in well over a month in early trading but rebounded to end the day only modestly lower.

After plunging as much as 2.2 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq closed down just 12.43 points or 0.1 percent at 13,389.43. Meanwhile, the Dow tumbled 473.66 points or 1.4 percent to 34,269.16 and the S&P 500 slid 36.33 points or 0.9 percent to 4,152.10.

The major European markets also showed significant moves to the downside on the day. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index plunged by 2.5 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index slumped by 1.9 percent and 1.8 percent, respectively.

Crude oil futures settled higher Tuesday following a report from OPEC that said demand is expected to rise by 5.95 million barrels per day or 6.6 percent this year. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for June ended up by $0.36 or 0.6 percent at $65.28 a barrel.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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