Finance Markets

January 16, 2007

Tokyo department stores lower on sales concerns

Permalink: Tokyo department stores lower on sales concerns

Filed under: Equities, Economy, Asia, Japan

With investors seeming to want to hold off on committing their money anywhere before the Bank of Japan makes its decision on interest rates Thursday, the Tokyo equities markets moved very little on Tuesday. The Nikkei 225 was unchanged at 17,202.46, while the Topix index was lower, but only by 0.1 percent to 1,703.54.

In the retail sector, department stores were lower on worries that early January sales will turn out to have been less than hoped. Mitsukoshi dropped 0.7 percent to ¥562, while Isetan fell 1.1 percent to ¥2,185. Takashimaya was 2.6 percent lower to ¥1,591 and Daimaru was down 2.7 percent to ¥1,507.

After an industry organization predicted double-digit growth for the 2007-2008 fiscal year, stocks related to the manufacture of computer chips saw gains. Tokyo Electron was 1.2 percent higher to ¥9,300, while Advantest gained 1.8 percent to ¥6,660.

The securities sector was still being helped by consolidation rumors. The sector as a whole added 0.5 percent, with Matsui Securities up 0.9 percent to ¥983 and Nikko Cordial added 2.1 percent to ¥1,337. Nikko Cordial, however, is still significantly lower than it was directly before an accounting scandal was revealed in December.

Elsewhere in Asian markets, the Vietnam Index was 3.85 percent higher to 983.6, a new record high, in the wake of a series of initial public offerings there. The benchmark index in Jakarta, meanwhile, was 1.4 percent higher on Tuesday after a gain of 3.1 percent on Monday. It was the biggest two-day gain in seven months, but its Tuesday close at 1,754.29 was below its close at the end of 2006 as enthusiasm was held back by the news that two people had died of bird flu.

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