Nikkei pulls back from multi-week high

Published: November 09, 2018 11:46:59 | Updated: November 14, 2018 12:38:42

Japan’s Nikkei came off a multi-week high on Friday, tracking broader losses in global equities markets, and as worries about further Sino-US trade tensions weighed on some China-focused shares.

The Nikkei share average ended the morning session 0.66 per cent lower at 22,338.26, after hitting a 2-1/2-week high of 22,583.43 during the previous session, reports Reuters.

Japan’s benchmark index has recovered 6.5 per cent in recent weeks, after falling to its lowest level since late March on Oct. 26, with gains culminating in a post-US mid-terms relief rally on Thursday.

Asian stocks fell on Friday as Wall Street took a breather on a drop in US crude oil prices, and after the Federal Reserve kept intact its plans to gradually raise interest rates.

The Fed is expected to hike interest rates next month, the fourth time this year.

Analysts said some China-focused shares underperformed the broader market on Friday.

“Though the mid-term elections are over, worries that the US-China trade war will drag on for the long term are lingering,” said Norihiro Fujito, chief investment strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities.

Shares of factory automation equipment maker Fanuc Corp were down 4.1 per cent, Nabtesco Corp lost 3.1 per cent and Keyence fell 1.0 per cent.

Brands which have seen strong demand from Chinese consumers fell.

Cosmetics maker Shiseido Co, which reported third-quarter earnings the previous day, slumped 4.8 per cent while personal care goods maker Kao Corp was off 2.1 per cent.

Index-heavyweights Fast Retailing and Nintendo declined 1.3 per cent and 2.6 per cent, respectively. SoftBank Corp was flat.

The broader Topix edged 0.17 per cent lower to 1,678.35, with 12 of the 33 subsectors trading in negative territory.

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