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Markets

Tokyo's Nikkei closes lower

  • Japan's economy contracted 1.0 percent during the three months to March, compared with the previous estimate of a 1.3 percent quarter-on-quarter contraction, revised Cabinet Office data showed.
Published June 8, 2021

TOKYO: Tokyo's benchmark Nikkei index closed lower Tuesday, with sentiment weighed by uncertainties from the domestic Covid-19 situation to the fate of the Tokyo Olympics.

The Nikkei 225 fell 0.19 percent, or 55.68 points, to 28,963.56, but the broader Topix index edged up 0.09 percent, or 1.80 points, to 1,962.65.

"It's hard for investors to take part in active trading due to a number of uncertain factors, including Japan's coronavirus situation," Yoshihiro Okumura of Chibagin Asset Management told AFP.

Investors are concerned that cases could rebound if emergency restrictions in Tokyo and other regions are lifted on June 20 as planned, Okumura said.

"Among other uncertain elements is the Olympics," he added.

"Even if the Olympics can be held as planned, it is still uncertain if that would be a buying factor or a selling factor" for investors.

Games organisers have ruled out another postponement, and will make a decision later this month on how many spectators -- if any -- are allowed to attend, with overseas fans already barred.

The dollar fetched 109.41 yen in Asian afternoon trade, against 109.26 yen in New York late Monday.

Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing dropped 1.02 percent to 83,260 yen, and SoftBank Group was down 1.64 percent at 8,019 yen.

Pharmaceutical firm Eisai soared 19.35 percent to 9,251 yen after the United States approved the Alzheimer's drug it developed with Biogen, the first new medicine against the disease in almost two decades.

Japan's economy contracted 1.0 percent during the three months to March, compared with the previous estimate of a 1.3 percent quarter-on-quarter contraction, revised Cabinet Office data showed.

The figures, released before the opening bell on Tuesday, did not prompt a strong market reaction.

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