April 8, 2016 / 5:36 AM / 2 years ago

Nikkei rises as yen weakens, but Fast Retailing plummets

TOKYO, April 8 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei rose on Friday afternoon in volatile trade, reversing its course as the dollar firmed against the yen and lifted risk appetite, but a sharp drop on Fast Retailing limited gains on the benchmark.

The Nikkei share average gained 0.8 percent to 15,874.76 in midafternoon trade, crawling back from its intraday low of 15,471.80.

Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso said early on Friday that rapid foreign exchange moves were “undesirable,” that the current yen moves were “one-sided,” and that Japan would take steps as needed. Aso’s words helped the dollar gain about 0.4 percent to 108.67 yen.

Fast Retailing shares plummeted more than 12 percent after it cut its net profit forecast by half, citing significant declines in first-half operating income from its Uniqlo brand outlets in Japan and abroad. It contributed a hefty negative 145 points to the Nikkei.

The broader Topix outperformed the Nikkei, rising 1.9 percent to 1,296.27.

The JPX-Nikkei Index 400 added 1.9 percent to 11,703.53. (Reporting by Ayai Tomisawa; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)

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