Nikkei 225 Watch: Stronger Yen and Profit Taking Weigh on Index

on Aug 15, 2013
Listen Thursday August 15th: Nikkei 225 today retreated from yesterday’s one-week high as a weak session on Wall Street depressed sentiment, a stronger yen weighed on manufacturers and investors took some profits following the recent rally in securities brokers and real-estate companies. At 08.00 BST the Japanese benchmark was 297.22 points or 2.12 percent lower at 13,752.94.

The Topix also closed in the red today, down by 19.52 points or 1.67 percent at 1,151.82. Out of the index’s 33 subsectors, 31 declined, with the biggest fallers in the real estate and securities-broking sectors. Nomura Holdings dropped 2.55 percent to ¥725.00, Daiwa Securities declined 3.72 percent to ¥803.00, Mitsui Fudosan and Sumitomo Realty & Development lost 3.37 percent and 3.01 percent to ¥3,010.00 and ¥4,190.00, respectively.

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A stronger yen weighed on manufacturers with electronic components maker Taiyo Yuden falling 3.74 percent to ¥1,286.00 and Panasonic and Suzuki Motor both dropping by more than three percent to ¥858.00 and ¥2,481.00, respectively.
Camera maker Nikon bucked the downward trend and rose 1.90 percent to ¥1,720.00 on reports that it was planning to develop stem cell technologies in collaboration with Riken research institute.

Reuters quoted Daiwa Securities analyst Takuya Takahashi as saying that further distress in Egypt and a rise in crude oil prices posed risk to the Japanese market. “The market is generally worried about rising gasoline prices as import costs rise on the back of the weakening yen. Although some oil companies could benefit from a possibility that the value of their inventories could rise, it should be negative to the overall market,” Takahashi said.

The S&P/ASX 200 ended the Sydney trading session five points or 0.1 percent lower at 5,152.40 despite a rally in mining companies. Perseus Mining jumped by 14.91 percent to AUD 0.655, Newcrest Mining rose 1.26 percent to AUD 12.09 and BHP Billiton increased 1.17 percent to AUD 37.33.
A Thomson Reuters poll released on Wednesday showed a majority of economists expect the U.S. Federal Reserve to reduce asset purchases at its September 17-18 policy meeting. Also on Wednesday, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said the central bank needed to see more data in the second half of the year before it started to cut back on its stimulus to make sure the move would not spark deflation.
**The Nikkei 225 was 297.22 points or 2.12 percent higher at 13,752.94 as of 15.08.2013, 08.00 BST.**
**The Topix was 19.52 points or 1.67 percent lower at 1,151.82 as of 15.08.2013, 08.00 BST.**
**The S&P/ASX 200 was 5.00 points or 0.10 percent lower at 5,152.40 as of 15.08.2013, 08.00 BST.**


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