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Saturday 22nd of November 2008
December 27, 2007

Tokyo markets see declines


by Elaine Frei
Tokyo markets see declines

Equities markets in Tokyo were lower on the last full trading day of the year. Declines came on the news that house prices are down again in the United States and on a report that Japanese consumer finance companies will have paid out twice as many refunds to customers this year than they did in 2007. The Nikkei 225 and the Topix index each fell 0.57 percent to 15,564.69 and 1,499.94 respectively, while the Mothers market was down 1.3 percent to 801.21.

Elsewhere in the Asia-Pacific region most markets made gains. The major exception was Hong Kong’s Hang Seng, which was 1.02 percent lower to 27,842.93. The Kospi index was up 0.1 percent to 1,908.62 in South Korea while in Singapore the Straits Times index added 0.11 percent to 3,477.2. India’s Sensex was 0.12 percent higher to 20,216.72. In Australia, the S&P/ASX200 was up 0.43 percent to 6,350.9 and the Sydney Ordinaries gained 0.6 percent to 6,426.4. The Shanghai Composite was 1.44 percent higher to 5,308.89. In Taiwan, the Taiex jumped 1.93 percent to 8,313.72.

European markets were mixed. The exception was Madrid’s IBEX, which dropped 0.22 percent to 15,256.2. The pan-European FTSE Eurofirst 300 added 0.07 percent to 1,509.1 while the Paris CAC-40 was up 0.24 percent to 5,627.48 and the Dax added 0.45 percent to 8,038.6 in Frankfurt.
London’s equities markets saw gains as the FTSE 100 added 0.29 percent to 6,497.8 and the FTSE 250 gained 0.2 percent to 10,608.3.

Wall Street was lower in early afternoon trade on both economic and geopolitical news. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was 1.17 percent lower to 13,392.85 while the Nasdaq Composite was down 1.26 percent to 2,690.04 and the S&P 500 had dropped 1.11 percent to 1,480.99 in light volume as many traders extended the Christmas holiday.

Oil prices were higher, while metals and grains prices were mixed on the session.

The Swiss franc saw gains as a safe haven after the assassination of Benazir Bhutto in Pakistan, while the US dollar and the pound both weakened versus the euro.

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