Nikkei little changed after mixed tankan data
* Tankan result gives limited impact to stock market - analysts * Selling in emerging market currencies can be a threat to Japanese market - analyst * Ibiden tumbles after cutting profit outlook By Ayai Tomisawa TOKYO, Oct 1 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average was little changed in choppy trade on Wednesday, with a weak yen supporting sentiment despite mixed data from the Bank Of Japan's tankan survey. Business confidence among Japanese manufacturers improved for the first time in two quarters in the three months to September, a central bank survey showed, an encouraging sign that parts of the economy are stabilising. However, sentiment for the services sector worsened more than expected, suggesting some companies are still struggling to shake off the impact of a sales tax hike in April. The Nikkei share average was up 0.2 percent at 16,200.15 points by mid-morning, recouping early losses. "The tankan survey gave the market a mixed message," said Hikaru Sato, a senior technical analyst at Daiwa Securities. "The yen is still weak, so investors are responding to the weak yen. If setiment in both manufactures and services sectors was bad, there might have been expectations for easing, but the mixed data provided no direction to the market." Other market observers said that a concern simmering in the global market is a sell-off in emerging market currencies against the dollar due to rising interest rates in the U.S. Emerging equities were set for their biggest quarterly loss in more than a year and currencies traded at multi-months low against a rising dollar, with Russian stocks and the rouble among the worst performers of the past three months. "The Japanese market has been able to escape a blow from a sell-off in emerging market currencies thanks to the weak yen, but you can't stay overly optimistic because it can be a threat," said Norihiro Fujito, a senior investment strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities. "Anything could trigger a correction, like an unwinding in yen selling, and we need to monitor hedge funds' moves on when they start booking profits from the recent gains in the Nikkei." Helped by the weakening yen and building momentum in the U.S. economy, the Nikkei reached seven-year highs last month. For September, the benchmark gained 4.9 percent. The dollar was at 109.64 yen, having scaled a six-year peak of 109.86 yen. Exporters were mixed despite the weak yen as some investors took profits from the recent gains. Toyota Motor Corp rose 0.5 percent, but Nissan Motor Co dropped 1.0 percent and Panasonic Corp added 0.2 percent. Ibiden Co, however, nosedived 12 percent after it cut its full-year net profit outlook to 11 billion yen from previously forecast 16.5 billion yen. The broader Topix rose 0.1 percent to 1,327.63 and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 advanced 0.1 percent to 12,063.83. (Editing by Kim Coghill)
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