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Japan stocks stumble as return to coronavirus lockdowns looms

CoronavirusApr 20, 2021 08:24
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© Reuters.

By Junko Fujita and Stanley White
TOKYO, April 20 (Reuters) - Japanese shares fell on Tuesday
by their most in a month, weighed down by worries that possible
reintroduction of COVID-19 lockdowns in the country's biggest
cities would slow the economic recovery.
Selling was seen across almost all sectors, with only one of
the Tokyo Stock Exchange's 33 industry sub-indexes closing
higher and just 16 stocks up on the benchmark Nikkei share
average .N225 .
The Nikkei settled down 1.97% at 29,100.38, its worst since
March 24, while the broader Topix .TOPX dropped 1.55% to
1,926.25 in its biggest slide in four weeks.
"It's just like the decline is bringing another sell-off
today," said Shoichi Arisawa, general manager of the investment
research department at IwaiCosmo Securities.
"There is a concern about virus resurgence not only in Japan
but also in other countries. Investors are becoming cautious
about an economic reopening, particularly since many Japanese
companies are sensitive to the global economy."
Tokyo and Osaka may slide back into states of emergency due
to a resurgence in COVID-19 cases. Japan this month put these
prefectures as well as others under "quasi-states of emergency"
but those measures have done little to reverse the trend so far.
Index heavyweights Fast Retailing 9983.T , known for its
Uniqlo clothing brand, fell 2.17%, while SoftBank Group 9984.T
lost 1.84%.
Semiconductor-related stocks tracked their U.S. peers .SOX
lower, with Tokyo Electron 8035.T falling 2.3%, Advantest
6857.T dropping 3.2% and Murata Manufacturing 6981.T losing
1.58%.
The top percentage losers on the Nikkei index were Marui
Group Co Ltd 8252.T , down 5.82%, followed by Dentsu Group Inc
4324.T , losing 4.46%, and Daikin Industries Ltd 6367.T , down
by 4.28%.
The biggest percentage gainers in the index were Kawasaki
Kisen Kaisha Ltd 9107.T , up 2.19%, followed by Mitsui OSK
Lines Ltd 9104.T , gaining 1.66%, and Oji Holdings Corp
3861.T , up by 1.4%.
The volume of shares traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange's
main board .TOPX was 1.09 billion, compared with the average
of 1.29 billion in the past 30 days.

Japan stocks stumble as return to coronavirus lockdowns looms
 

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