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Nikkei slips on renewed U.S. rate concerns

Written by: Staff

TOKYO, Apr 10 (Reuters) The Nikkei average fell 0.66 percent on Monday, with profit-taking hitting recent gainers such as Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., after strong U.S. jobs data revived concerns about higher interest rates and hurt U.S. bond and stock markets.

The Nikkei was down 115.66 points at 17,447.71 as of 0036 GMT. On Friday it closed above 17,500 for the first time since July 2000.

The broader TOPIX index was down 0.61 percent at 1,772.89.

Mitsubishi UFJ, the world's biggest banking group by assets, was down 0.5 percent at 1.92 million yen. The stock hit a lifetime high of 1.95 million yen on Friday.

The insurance sector IINSU.was down 1.7 percent, the worst performer among the Tokyo bourse's 33 industry subsectors, with T&D Holdings Inc. falling 2.6 percent to 9,230 yen.

Insurance companies had risen on expectations that the increased value of their equity holdings will boost earnings.

Shares in INPEX Holdings Inc. gained 3.5 percent to 1.20 million yen, after the Nihon Keizai said the oil developer plans to invest about 700 billion yen (.9 billion) to produce liquefied natural gas in Australia.

Reuters VJ VP0635

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