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Japan stocks edge lower, exporters fall

Written by: Staff
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Tokyo, Apr 25: The Nikkei average edged down 0.32 percent on Tuesday as a rise in the yen undermined optimism about earnings of exporters, offsetting a rebound in Mitsubishi Estate Co. and others dependent on domestic demand.

''The currency issue is hanging over exporters, so domestic plays are in favour, although buying doesn't look strong enough to make a market turnround,'' said Tatsuyuki Kawasaki, director at Kaneyama Securities' equities trading division.

''Confidence over Japan's economic fundamentals stays firm, but investors first want to see earnings reports,'' he said.

Nissan Motor Co. Ltd., Japan's second-biggest auto maker, and KDDI Corp., the No. 2 telecoms company, are among several firms due to announce full-year results and outlooks after the market closes.

The Nikkei was down 53.95 points at 16,860.45 as of 0057 GMT.

On Monday it fell 489.56 points to its lowest close since March 28.

The TOPIX index was down 0.19 percent at 1,707.50.

Mitsubishi Estate, Japan's second-biggest real estate company, was up 2.1 percent at 2,450 yen. Rival Mitsui Fudosan Co. Ltd. was up 2.1 percent at 2,490 yen.

Retailer Seven&I Holdings Co. gained 1.1 percent to 4,510 yen, snapping a four-day losing streak.

Oji Paper Co. Ltd. rose 3 percent to 691 yen as a rise in the yen and a halt in a recent rally in oil prices eased concerns about higher importing costs for pulp, fuel and other materials.

Such concerns had taken a toll on the paper and pulp sector recently, with its subindex IPAPR.falling to its lowest level since early February on Monday.

Canon Inc., the world's top maker of digital cameras, which generates three-quarters of its sales outside Japan, was down 2.5 percent at 8,430 yen.

Toyota Motor Corp., the world's second-biggest auto maker, fell 0.8 percent to 6,660 yen despite a newspaper report that its operating profit probably rose 8 percent to top 1.8 trillion yen (.7 billion) in the year ended in March, slightly higher than the market consensus.

Nissan was down 2.4 percent at 1,439 yen.

Reuters

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