Nikkei falls as chip sector tumbles

Published: August 10, 2018 11:53:50 | Updated: August 13, 2018 12:40:19

Japan’s Nikkei fell on Friday morning as semiconductor-related shares tumbled after Morgan Stanley downgraded its view on the US chip sector.

The Nikkei share average dropped 0.4 per cent to 22,513.93. For the week, it has shed 0.1 per cent so far.

Chip equipment makers Tokyo Electron dropped 3.3 per cent, Advantest Corp fell 3.5 per cent and Screen Holdings shed 3.1 per cent, while silicon-wafer maker Sumco Corp tumbled 5.1 per cent.

Morgan Stanley cut its outlook for the US semiconductor industry to “cautious” from “in-line,” saying it could not see much upside to its estimates partly due to increasing trade tensions.

Investors are keeping an eye on Japan’s trade talks in Washington, reports Reuters.

Apart from chip-related stocks, Friday’s losers included insurance shares. Dai-ichi Life Holdings shed 2.4 per cent and Sompo Holdings declined 1.4 per cent.

Meanwhile, Fujifilm Holdings soared 4.6 per cent after the company said to buy back up to 100 billion yen of its own stock.

On Friday, government data showed Japan’s economy expanded at an annualised rate of 1.9 per cent in April-June, bouncing from a contraction in the previous quarter, in a sign its recovery momentum remained intact.

The preliminary reading for second-quarter gross domestic product compared with a median estimate for a 1.4 per cent in a Reuters poll of economists.

The broader Topix dropped 0.6 per cent to 1,730.39.

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