Roundup: Tokyo stocks end lower on Wall Street's retreat, Fed's policy in focus

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, August 18, 2022
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TOKYO, Aug. 18 (Xinhua) -- Tokyo stocks closed lower Thursday tracking their U.S. peers' drop overnight, with investors trying to determine the future course of the U.S. Federal Reserves interest rate hikes.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average dropped 280.63 points, or 0.96 percent, from Wednesday to close the day at 28,942.14.

The broader Topix index, meanwhile, lost 16.49 points, or 0.82 percent, to finish at 1,990.50.

Dealers here said the market is likely to rebound in the near term provided that U.S. shares rally in the next session later in the day.

They added, however, that investors may refrain from making major bets ahead of Fed chairman Jerome Powell's speech at a symposium next week, to wait for clues about the Fed's future rate hikes.

"We're hearing that a lot of people are awaiting Fed chairman Jerome Powell's appearance at next week's Jackson Hole symposium, so the sentiment may well be wait-and-see until then," a market participant at a domestic securities firm, was quoted as saying.

Minutes from the Fed's meeting last month, released Wednesday, however, suggested that the Fed is unlikely to slow the pace of its interest rate hikes from September and into the future, and will continue with its aggressive monetary policy.

"There were no remarks suggesting that the Fed will halt rate hikes or lower them next year, although many investors were hoping to receive some hints about it," Yutaka Miura, senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities Co., said.

"Rate hikes would hurt economic activities in the United States and in turn weigh on U.S. and Japanese shares," Miura also said.

By the close of play, precision instrument, transportation equipment, and real estate issues comprised those that declined the most on the Prime Market, with falling issues outpacing those that rose by 1,283 to 486, while 69 ended the day unchanged.

Technology-oriented issues followed their U.S. peers lower overnight, with Advantest dropping 2.0 percent, while Fanuc fell 1.9 percent.

Nikkei heavyweight SoftBank Corp. shed 0.2 percent, while Sony Group Corp. ended the day down 1.8 percent.

Automakers reversed after accelerating the previous day, with Honda Motor down 0.9 percent, Toyota Motor dropping 1.8 percent, while Suzuki Motor lost 1.1 percent.

On the Prime Market on Thursday, 987.93 million shares changed hands, dropping from Wednesday's volume of 1,135.29 million shares.

The turnover on the penultimate trading day of the week came to 2,308.00 billion yen (17.06 billion U.S. dollars). Enditem

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