Updated March 15th, 2024 at 10:09 IST

Japan's Nikkei dips as tech shares fall in sync with US market

At midday, the Nikkei stood at 38,751.54, down 0.14%, marking its most significant weekly decline since early December with a 2.4% drop.

Reported by: Business Desk
Nikkei | Image:Nikkei

Japan stocks slip: The Nikkei stock average in Japan experienced a slight decline on Friday, influenced by a drop in technology shares mirroring their counterparts in the United States. Investors remained cautious ahead of the upcoming Bank of Japan (BOJ) meeting.

At midday, the Nikkei was down by 0.14 per cent, standing at 38,751.54. Despite a brief respite in the previous session, the index was poised for its most significant weekly decline since early December, having shed 2.4 per cent over the week.

Tech pulls downward

The downward trend was driven by tech-related stocks, which had previously contributed to pushing the index above the 40,000-point mark earlier in the month. Following the lead of US chipmaker Nvidia, whose stock dropped, semiconductor shares faced selling pressure. 

Advantest, a chip-testing equipment maker, and Tokyo Electron, a chip-making equipment giant, were among those affected, with declines of 1.7 per cent and 3.3 per cent, respectively. Advantest was particularly hard-hit, seeing a loss of over 7 per cent for the week.

Investors appeared to be closely monitoring the impact of the US market downturn and the outcome of Japan's wage growth survey conducted by Rengo, the country's largest labour union. These factors are likely to influence the BOJ's decision during its meeting on March 18-19, with speculation arising that the central bank might reconsider its negative interest rate policy.


Economic rebound

Japan's Finance Minister, Shunichi Suzuki, remarked on Friday that the nation's economy is no longer experiencing deflation and highlighted a notable trend of wage increases.

However, losses in the Nikkei were partly offset by gains in the energy sector, with energy exploration companies and oil and coal production firms recording increases. Meanwhile, heavyweight stocks like SoftBank Group Corp and Fast Retailing, the parent company of Uniqlo, managed to edge higher.

The broader Topix index showed some resilience, climbing by 0.58 per cent to 2676.95.

(With Reuters Inputs)


Published March 15th, 2024 at 10:09 IST

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