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Japan Stocks fall on U.S. stimulus concerns, stronger yen

Capital Market 

Japan share market finished session higher on Friday, 23 October 2020, following an overnight Wall Street rally, thanks to better-than-expected U. S. weekly jobless claims data and comments by U. S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi suggesting that talks on a fresh coronavirus relief package were progressing. Investors were also relieved by the final and more civil debate between US President Donald Trump and challenger Joe Biden compared with their first messy showdown.

However, market gains capped as investors rushed to sell semiconductor and electronic parts names after U. S. chipmaker Intel Corp. posted weak sales at its data center business.

At closing bell, the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average advanced 42.32 points, or 0.18%, to 23,516.59. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange grew 5.53 points, or 0.34%, to 1,625.32.

Total 26 issues of 33 industry category of Topix index ended into black territory, with Rubber Products, Air Transportation, Mining, Insurance, Securities & Commodities Futures, Marine Transportation, and Land Transportation issues being notable gainers, while Precision Instruments, Retail Trade, and Foods issues were notable losers.

Shares of Nexon Co. soared 17.2% after the game-maker was chosen as a new Nikkei average component to replace FamilyMart Co., which will be delisted next month after a successful tender offer by Itochu.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries gained 6.6% after reports that it is considering effectively halting its project to develop Japan's first homegrown small passenger jet, which had been viewed by investors as a costly operation.

On the other hand, Zozo Inc., Skylark Holdings Co. and some other stocks succumbed to selling after being supported by expectations that they may replace FamilyMart as a Nikkei average component. Semiconductor test device maker Advantest Corp. and chipmaking gear manufacturer Tokyo Electron fell on the news of Intel's weak sales.

ECONOMIC NEWS: Japan Consumer Prices Down 0.1% On Month In September- Japan consumer prices were down a seasonally adjusted 0.1 percent on month in September, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday.

That was in line with expectations and unchanged from the August reading. Individually, prices were up for furniture, clothing and education, while they were down for fuel, communications and recreation. They were flat for food, housing and medical care. On a yearly basis, inflation was flat.

Japan Manufacturing PMI Stays In Contraction In October- Japan manufacturing sector continued to contract in October, the latest survey from Jibun Bank revealed on Friday with a manufacturing PMI score of 48.0, That's up 47.7 in September, although it remain beneath the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction. Production and new orders fell further but at weaker rates. The decline in backlogs also moderated while employment fell marginally. Business expectations about the year ahead outlook remained positive. The report also showed that the services index fell to 46.6 from 46.9 and the composite index rose to 46.7 from 46.6.

CURRENCY NEWS: The Japanese yen traded at 104.74 per dollar, having weakened from levels around 104.5 against the greenback yesterday.

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Fri, October 23 2020. 17:07 IST