July 4, 2018 / 2:07 AM / 9 months ago

Japanese stocks slip as tech shares, Fast Retailing retreat

* Nikkei down 0.55 pct, Topix dips 0.27 pct

* Drop by Wall St shares, stronger yen weigh on market

* Tech shares hit after slide by US chip maker Micron

By Shinichi Saoshiro

TOKYO, July 4 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei slipped on Wednesday, as technology shares were hit by a slide in U.S. chip makers and sluggish sales weighed on index heavyweight Fast Retailing.

The Nikkei share average was down 0.55 percent at 21,665.48.

High-tech stocks tracked Wall Street peers. Tokyo Electron dropped 4.4 percent, Advantest Corp shed 4.8 percent, SUMCO Corp fell 5.05 percent and Screen Holdings lost 4.55 percent.

On Tuesday, the tech-heavy Nasdaq slid 0.86 percent, with chipmakers sliding after Micron Technology Inc sank when a Chinese court temporarily barred it from selling 26 chip products in the mainland. Micron said it had not yet received such an injunction, but its shares lost 5.5 percent on Tuesday.

Separately, the U.S. government moved to block China Mobile from offering services to the country’s telecommunications market on Tuesday, keeping trade tensions on the boil ahead of July 6 when Washington is set to impose tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods.

“Overnight losses by U.S. shares and a stronger yen is weighing on the market, with some participants opting to close out their positions amid the ongoing trade concerns,” said Yutaka Miura, senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities in Tokyo.

“July 6 is key day of sorts, but the trade spat will remain a market theme as tensions are unlikely to go away before the U.S. midterm elections (in November).”

Elsewhere, Fast Retailing retreated 1.2 percent after same-store sales at its Uniqlo clothing outlets in Japan fell 4 percent in June from a year earlier with a cold spell reducing demand for summer outfits.

Panasonic Corp was down 1.6 percent after Tesla Inc tumbled overnight on the back of scepticism over its Model 3 vehicles. Panasonic supplies Tesla with automotive batteries.

Of Tokyo’s 33 sub-indexes, 15 were in the red, led by precision machinery. Oil and coal products led the gainers following a rise in crude oil prices.

The broader Topix was 0.27 percent lower at 1,688.17. (Editing by Shri Navaratnam)

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