June 24, 2016 / 4:21 AM / 2 years ago

Nikkei tumbles to more than 4-month low as Brexit looms

TOKYO, June 24 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks tumbled to more than a four-month low on Friday as voting returns suggested Britain has opted to leave the European Union.

The Nikkei dived as much as 8.3 percent to 14,890.56 points, the lowest since February. At 0415 GMT, the Nikkei was down 7.2 percent to 15,069.62.

A sharp surge in the yen added to downward pressure on the Nikkei as investors sought safe havens.

The greenback dropped to 99.00 yen, a fall of 6.7 percent, the first time it fell below the 100 mark since late 2013. It later edged back to 101.50 yen.

Trading was briefly halted for Japan’s Nikkei futures, the first time since May 23, 2013, when then Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke stunned the market by hinting a possibility that Fed purchases would be scaled back.

The broader Topix dropped 6.8 percent to 1,210.41 and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 declined 6.9 percent to 10,920.67.

Reporting by Ayai Tomisawa; Editing by Kim Coghill

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