BUSINESS Tokyo stocks open lower on US rout, higher yen

BUSINESS

Tokyo stocks open lower on US rout, higher yen

AFP

09:05, March 04, 2020

Tokyo stocks opened lower on Wednesday, extending falls on Wall Street, with investors underwhelmed by the US Federal Reserve's surprise rate cut, which also sent the yen firmer against the dollar.

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File photo

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index dropped 0.89 percent or 187.35 points to 20,895.38 in early trade, while the broader Topix index was down 1.30 percent or 19.55 points at 1,485.57.

Japanese shares started sell order-dominated trade "on the backdrop of rapid falls in the US market despite the Fed's emergency rate cut and the easing dollar against the yen," Mizuho Securities said in a note.

Investors are nervously watching "the spread of the novel coronavirus and the results of Super Tuesday" in the US, when Democrats vote in 14 states for a candidate to face Donald Trump in November, it said.

The dollar fetched 107.16 yen in early Asian trade, after briefly dipping below the 107-yen level before Tokyo hours. That compares with 107.16 yen in New York late Tuesday.

In Tokyo, banks were lower with Mitsubishi UFJ Financial trading down 2.36 percent at 507.8 yen and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial down 2.15 percent at 3,330 yen.

Exporters were also lower, with Toyota trading off 1.45 percent at 6,942 yen and Sony down 0.73 percent at 6,755 yen.

On Wall Street, the Dow ended down 2.9 percent at 26,917.41.

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