Roundup: Tokyo stocks close mixed as chip issues advance, investors lock in gains

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TOKYO, Feb. 12 (Xinhua) -- Tokyo stocks closed mixed on Friday as advances by semiconductor-oriented issues and some bellwether issues were offset by profit-taking by investors securing gains after the market's recent run of 30-year closing highs.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average lost 42.86 points, or 0.14 percent, from Wednesday to close the day at 29,520.07.

The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, added 3.06 points, or 0.16 percent, to finish at 1,933.88.

The benchmark Nikkei stock index snapped a four-session winning streak as despite buying on the back of chip-linked stocks advance on Wall Street overnight, investors took profits after the market's run of rises to 30-year closing highs, local brokers said.

"The Nikkei's decline reflects reasonable profit-taking following a sharp rise even in this week," Norihiro Fujito, chief investment strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities Co., was quoted as saying.

Other market strategists pointed out that some investors took a breather amid concerns the market may be overheating and to see how the correction would shape up in the coming few sessions, as well as to assess if the overall fundamentals for industries are solid.

"Investors are taking a pause as they wait for the market price to consolidate after a recent sharp rise," Koichi Kurose, chief strategist at Resona Asset Management, was quoted as saying.

"The gain in the past few weeks was led by optimism for each individual company, not by the growth for overall industries. Investors are waiting to confirm whether the recovery is true," Kurose added.

By the close of play, marine transportation and glass and ceramic product issues led notable decliners, while semiconductor, metal product and securities house issues comprised those that gained the most.

Chip related issues found favor and tracked their U.S. peers to climb overnight, following reports that U.S. President Joe Biden's administration plans to address the recent global chip shortage, which saw the Philadelphia semiconductor index hit record highs overnight.

As a result, Screen Holdings gained 3.9 percent, while Tokyo Electron climbed 3.7 percent.

Sumco added 3.7 percent and Renesas Electronics advanced 3.3 percent, after announcing a 45.6 billion yen (434.39 million U.S. dollars) annual net profit, recovering from sharp losses a year earlier.

Among automakers, Toyota Motor accelerated 3.5 percent after announcing it had increased its stockpile of chips, but other makers lost ground, with Nissan Motor dropping 2.6 percent, Honda Motor down 2.9 percent and Isuzu Motors losing 1.2 percent.

Shipping firms were in the cross-hairs for profit-taking and duly sank, with Kawasaki Kisen falling 4.5 percent, while Mitsui O.S.K. Lines and Nippon Yusen both closed 4.7 percent lower.

Issues that fell outpaced those that rose by 1,107 to 1,004 on the First Section, while 82 ended the day unchanged.

On the main section on Friday, 1,343.98 million shares changed hands, rising from Wednesday's volume of 1,324.35 million shares.

The turnover on the final trading day of the week came to 3,020.210 billion yen (28.769 billion U.S. dollars).

Markets in Japan were closed on Thursday for a national holiday. Enditem

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