Nikkei falls on weakness in global shares, focus on U.S. jobs data
* Insurers drop after gaining early this week * Takata falls after sources say 400,000 airbag inflators need to be replaced By Ayai Tomisawa TOKYO, June 5 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average fell on Friday after U.S. and European shares languished, as investors stayed cautious before the release later in the day of U.S. jobs data that might give a clue to the timing of an increase in U.S. interest rates. The Nikkei 225 dropped 0.5 percent to 20,396.23 in midmorning trade, moving away from a 15-year high of 20,655.33 hit nearly a week ago. Investors are focused on U.S. jobs data, expected to show a 225,000 gain in non-farm payrolls, according to a Reuters estimate. Volatility in the European bond market continued to weigh on investor sentiment although a sell-off in bonds paused. Global bond yields swung wildly for a third straight session before ending well below their highs. The Nikkei has gained 17 percent this year, outperforming most of its global peers. The index had gained for 12 straight gains through last Monday, stoking concerns that a significant correction could be imminent. Still, some investors expect that the Japanese market to rise further in the medium term, helped by economic recovery hopes and prospects for higher corporate profits. "Since the Japanese market is sensitive to global market performances, investors are nervous because of recent volatility in the global bond market," said Takuya Takahashi, a strategist at Daiwa Securities. "Foreign funds which think they missed the bus may still want to buy now, but a lot of people prefer to stay on the sidelines." Sharp Corp fell 2.3 percent after Kyodo News reported that the struggling electronics maker is set to post a net loss of 180 billion yen in the fiscal year ending March 2016. Takata Corp declined 1.6 percent after sources said that at least 400,000 of the 4 million replacement inflators for its defective air bags will need to be replaced again in U.S. vehicles. Insurers, which gained on higher yields early this week, lost ground on profit-taking, with Dai-ichi Life Insurance falling 2.3 percent and Tokio Marine Holdings dropping 2.0 percent. The broader Topix dropped 0.7 percent to 1,662.39 and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 shed 0.7 percent to 15,003.58. (Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)
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