Nikkei turns lower as banks hit by Basel report on cash cushion

martes 10 de marzo de 2015 01:43 GYT
 

* Profit-taking kicks in after Nikkei fails to break through
19,000 despite weak yen - analysts
    * Banks languish on a report Basel committee may ask them to
boost capital

    By Ayai Tomisawa
    TOKYO, March 10 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks turned lower on
Tuesday afternoon, erasing all of the earlier gains as banks
were hit hard by a report saying that the Basel Committee may
ask banks to boost capital as a sufficient cushion in case of
spikes in interest rates.    
    The Nikkei dropped 0.9 percent to 18,626.46 in
mid-afternoon trade, after a 0.2 percent rise at the midday
break.
    Banks were lower, with the banking subsector 
falling 2.2 percent and was the second biggest loser on the
board. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group dropped 3.5
percent, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group shed 2.2
percent and Mizuho Financial Group declined 1.7
percent.
    The Nikkei business daily said the proposal to boost banks'
capital has been shepherded through the Basel Committee on
Banking Supervision by the U.K. and Germany, which are concerned
about a rise in rates, but Japan and the U.S. have raised strong
opposition.
    Japan's opposition stems from its banks holding massive
quantities of government bonds: 128 trillion yen ($1.05
trillion) worth in January, the Nikkei said.
    "The market was holding up in the morning and offset this
concern in the banking sector. But since the market could not
break through 19,000 despite a weaker yen, investors decided to
take profits," said Norihiro Fujito, a senior investment
strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities.
    The broader Topix fell 0.8 percent to 1,519.77 and
the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 shed 0.7 percent to
13,821.11.

 (Editing by Edwina Gibbs & Shri Navaratnam)