Tokyo, Sept 17, 2020 (AFP)
Tokyo stocks opened lower on Thursday to track falls on US high-tech shares, a day after Japan's parliament elected Yoshihide Suga as the country's new prime minister.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index was down 0.20 percent or 46.97 points to 23,428.56 in early trade, while the broader Topix index slipped 0.07 percent or 1.19 points to 1,643.16.
"Japanese shares are seen starting with declines due to falls in US high-tech shares, then could bottom out on expectations that the new Suga administration will continue Abe's policies," Okasan Online Securities said in a commentary.
Along with maintaining monetary easing, "how seriously the new government will tackle regulatory reforms and develop growth is key," it said, referring to long-desired structural reforms to boost the country's productivity.
Suga late Wednesday officially launched his new administration, pledging to keep coronavirus infections under control and kickstart an economy in recession, as Shinzo Abe left office after a record-breaking tenure.
The dollar fetched 105.00 yen in early Asian trade, against 104.92 yen in New York late Wednesday.
In Tokyo, Hitachi was down 0.13 percent after scrapped its multi-billion-pound nuclear plant project in the UK in face of the deteriorating investment environment.
Sony was down 0.23 percent at 8,191 yen after it said its PlayStation 5 game console will launch in November with a price tag of $500 for the premium PS5, and $400 for a "digital edition" designed for the trend of games being downloaded from the cloud.
Sony's rival Nintendo was down 1.04 percent at 59,210 yen after its president said the company plans to release new Switch games while extending the console's life cycle.
Among other shares, Honda was down 0.57 percent at 2,614.5 yen, Uniqlo casual wear operator Fast Retailing was off 0.46 percent at 65,210 yen, while Takeda Pharmaceutical was up 0.71 percent at 3,985 yen.
Investors were also paying attention to the Bank of Japan's policy decision later in the day, which is widely expected to keep the current easing programme, and central bank governor Haruhiko Kuroda's first press conference after the launch of the Suga administration.
On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.1 percent to close at 28,032.38, while the tech-rich Nasdaq lost 1.3 percent and the broader S&P slipped 0.5 percent.
Sumber : AFP
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