BUSINESS Tokyo stocks end flat on profit-taking amid eased concerns over US tapering

BUSINESS

Tokyo stocks end flat on profit-taking amid eased concerns over US tapering

Xinhua

17:16, June 11, 2021

TOKYO, June 11 (Xinhua) -- Tokyo stocks closed almost flat Friday as concerns over early tapering measures to U.S. stimulus eased following the latest consumer price data and saw investors opt to lock in gains.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average shed 9.83 points, or 0.03 percent, from Thursday to close the day at 28,948.73.

The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, lost 2.71 points, or 0.14 percent, to finish at 1,954.02.

Dealers here said the U.S. Labor Department's figures showing May's consumer price index jumped 5.0 percent, marking the the biggest year-on-year increase since August 2008, led to a drop in interest rates and eased concerns over near-term moves by the Fed to change its monetary policy.

"The upsurge in inflation, mostly tied to areas impacted by the pandemic, is not expected to force any monetary policy change by the Federal Reserve," Koichi Fujishiro, a senior economist at the Dai-ichi Life Research Institute, was quoted as saying.

Other analysts said the market's downside was supported by U.S. stocks rising overnight, with the Nasdaq's advance giving tech shares here a boost.

"Japan's technology stocks are bought as the Nasdaq's gain and the fall in U.S. interest rates lifted investor sentiment," Jun Morita, general manager of the research department at Chibagin Asset Management said.

He added, however, that uncertainty weighed on the market owing to an unclear outlook.

"But the market was weighed down by uncertainties. It's hard for investors to decide to sell or buy when the Nikkei hovers around the 29,000-level as they are not necessarily optimistic about the Japanese market outlook," Morita said.

By the close of play, bank, real estate and machinery issues comprised those that declined the most, and issues that fell outpaced those that rose by 1,363 to 709 on the First Section, while 121 ended the day unchanged.

Technology issues gaining ground included Advantest rising 0.6 percent, while Tokyo Electron added 0.7 percent. Screen Holdings edged up 0.3 percent, while M3 Inc. closed 3.1 percent higher.

Eisai bounced back after heavy selling pressure during the previous session, soaring 7.0 percent, following approval by U.S. regulators of a drug it jointly developed with U.S. firm Biogen to treat Alzheimer's disease.

Recruitment firm Recruit Holdings was the biggest drag on the Nikkei, however, dropping 2.5 percent by the close.

Machinery makers also weighed, with Komatsu falling 3.2 percent, while Kubota lost 4.5 percent.

On the main section on Friday, 1,221.15 million shares changed hands, rising from Thursday's volume of 1,028.05 million shares.

The turnover on the final trading day of the week came to 2,908.25 billion U.S. dollars (26.55 billion U.S. dollars).

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