Interest rate worries send Tokyo markets lower

The Tokyo equities markets were lower on Tuesday as investors worried about interest rates at home as well as the state of the US dollar and how export-focused business would be affected if it continues to decline. The Nikkei 225 fell 0.2 percent to 16,265.76. The Topix dropped even more, declining 0.6 percent to 1,598.89.

The worries of export-related sectors were illustrated by declines in the electronics sector, which dropped 0.5 percent as a whole. Sharp and Sony each fell 0.9 percent, to A?1,910 and A?4,510 respectively. Transport equipment fared even worse, as the sector dropped 0.7 percent.

Mondaya��s fall in oil prices benefited the airlines and shipping sectors. Shipping was up 2.7 percent as a whole. Nippon Yusen added 2.3 percent to A?838, while Kawasaki Kisen gained 3 percent to A?864 and Mitsui OSK was 3.1 percent higher to A?1,091.

All Nippon Airways added 0.7 percent to A?425 not only after oil prices fell but on the news that they are in merger talks with South Koreaa��s Asiana Airlines.

The lower oil prices, however, sent shares in Inpex 3.4 percent lower to A?995,000.

In the retail sector, Fast Retailing was 5.7 percent higher to A?10,910 after it said that same-store sales were up 8 percent in November over the same period last year, helped by cold weather clothing sales.

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