Nikkei falls to 2-week low as hedge funds take profits before quarter end
* Nikkei heads for biggest daily drop in 11 weeks * Hedge funds take profits before Jan-March quarter ends - traders * All subsectors in negative territory By Ayai Tomisawa TOKYO, March 27 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average tumbled to a two-week low on Friday, led by futures selling as hedge funds took profits from recent gains. The Nikkei benchmark fell 1.7 percent to 19,141.62 points after falling to as low as 19,099.87 in mid-afternoon trade, the lowest level since March 13. Earlier in the day, it rose to as high as 19,590.03. It looked set for its biggest daily drop in 11 weeks. "Hedge funds and commodity trading advisors are seen taking profits and unwinding their options positions before the first quarter ends," said a senior trader at a foreign brokerage. The Nikkei hit a 15-year high of 19,778.60 on Monday. Exporters also suffered, with Toyota Motor Corp falling 2.0 percent, Honda Motor Co dropping 2.1 percent and Nikon Corp shedding 3.6 percent. The broader Topix dropped 1.8 percent to 1,541.27, with all of its 33 subsectors in the red. The JPX-Nikkei Index 400 declined 1.7 percent to 14,021.16. (Editing by Eric Meijer & Kim Coghill)
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