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Steel sector gains in Tokyo

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by Elaine Frei

The Tokyo equities markets saw very little movement on Tuesday. The Nikkei 225 was lower, but only by 0.1 percent to 17,408.57, while the Topix index held steady at 1,730.76.

Steelmakers were higher on the session, protecting the markets from losses in other sectors. Tokyo Steel Manufacturing added 3.2 percent to ¥1,755 an the announcement that it will increase the prices it charges for its products. Nippon Steel gained 4.3 percent to ¥695, its highest share price in 16 years, helped by an earlier hike it its target share price, from ¥600 to ¥760, by UBS. The broker said that the target was raised due to increased demand for high-grade steel.

The construction sector saw declines as a bids-rigging scandal continued to unfold with searches of the offices of several companies. Obayashi dropped 2.3 percent to ¥733, while Shimizu fell 3.2 percent to ¥612 and Kajima was 3.7 percent lower to ¥544.

Banks and the real estate sector both were lower as investors took profits. The banking sector dropped 0.4 percent, with Mitsubishi UFJ falling 1.3 percent to ¥1,530,000. Meanwhile, the real estate sector was 1.1 percent lower with Mitsubishi Estate down 0.9 percent to ¥3,360 and Mitsui Fudosan 1.3 percent lower to ¥3,080.

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News posted: January 23, 2007

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