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imageTOKYO: Tokyo stocks fell Friday, led by major banks and automakers, while Toshiba posted its fourth day of losses as worries mount over its deteriorating finances.

Equities started in the red, taking a lead from Wall Street where two of the three main indexes closed lower after five-straight days of record closes.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index lost 0.58 percent, or 112.91 points, to end the day at 19,234.62. It was down 0.74 percent over the week.

The broader Topix index of all first-section issues slipped 0.42 percent, or 6.53 points, to 1,544.54, falling 0.13 percent this week.

Investors appeared to be losing enthusiasm as the White House has yet to explain how tax cuts flagged by President Donald Trump last week will be financed, while other details of his economic growth plans remain elusive.

"With the Trump administration still in a phase where they need to fill key positions, it's dampening the market's view and triggering dollar selling," said Juichi Wako, a senior strategist at Nomura Holdings.

"It'll be hard for the yen to head lower until we have a clearer idea of when the US will hike rates, capping Japanese equities amid a lack of drivers," he told Bloomberg News.

A strong yen generally darkens the outlook for Japanese exporters as it reduces the value of repatriated profits and can make their products more expensive abroad.

The dollar was trading at 113.42 yen Friday, up from 113.23 yen in New York but still down from 113.85 yen in Asia earlier Thursday.

Major automakers fell, with Toyota drooping 0.88 percent to 6,400 yen, while Nissan fell 0.62 percent to 1,116.5 yen and Honda lost 0.63 percent to 3,586 yen.

Toshiba dived 9.22 percent to 184 yen on fears it could be demoted from the Tokyo Stock Exchange's first section.

Its shares have lost more than 20 percent this week after the firm revealed huge losses in its US nuclear unit and said it was probing possible accounting fraud at the division.

On Friday, Standard & Poor's warned it may cut Toshiba's credit rating again while the head of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) told the Financial Times in an interview that he had ruled out a rescue of the firm's ailing nuclear unit.

There has been speculation Toshiba may need to join forces with another major Japanese firm involved in atomic power to keep the business from crashing.

Mobile carrier SoftBank fell 1.60 percent to 8,518 yen while banking giant Mitsubishi UFJ dropped 0.89 percent to 763.8 yen.

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017

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