August 8, 2018 / 6:58 AM / in a month

Nikkei dips as market braces for US-Japan trade talks; Shiseido weighs

* Shiseido tumbles after profit forecast undershoots expectation

* Kirin falls after its business profit disappoints

By Ayai Tomisawa

TOKYO, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei edged lower on Wednesday as the market braced for the start of U.S.-Japan trade talks the next day, offsetting gains in companies which posted strong results such as Nikon and Daikin.

Shiseido Co weighed after the cosmetics company’s annual operating forecast undershot market expectations. It dropped 4.4 percent and contributed a hefty 13 negative points to the Nikkei.

The company raised its operating profit forecast to 110 billion yen $990.10 million) from 90 billion yen for the year ending December, but it was below 118.1 billion yen estimated by 15 analysts by ThomsonReuters.

The Nikkei share average ended 0.1 percent lower at 22,644.31 points.

“People are cautious ahead of Thursday’s trade talks... they are bracing for the U.S.’s hard stance on Japan because that has been the pattern with China and Europe,” said Hikaru Sato, a senior technical analyst at Daiwa Securities.

Economy Minister Toshimitsu Motegi will meet U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on Aug. 9 as Tokyo seeks ways to counter U.S. pressure for a free trade agreement and head off a rise in tariffs on its auto exports.

Nikon Corp jumped 9.4 percent after the camera maker raised its net profit outlook to 53 billion yen from 50 billion yen for the year ending March 2019, due to strong demand for high-end digital cameras as well as reduced costs. It also expects to pay a higher annual dividend.

Air-conditioning system maker Daikin Industries soared 3.4 percent after its April-June operating profit rose 11.7 percent to 83.1 billion yen.

On the downside, Kirin Holdings tumbled 5.9 percent after its business profits fell 5 percent on the year to 49.2 billion yen.

Nomura Securities said that although the figure was ahead of its own estimate of 45 billion yen, it was mainly due to better-than-expected performances at Kyowa Hakko Kirin which had already announced results.

The broader Topix ended 0.1 percent lower at 1,744.71. ($1 = 111.1000 yen) (Editing by Kim Coghill)

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