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Tokyo: Stocks down 0.20% by break

Friday, December 5, 2014 - 14:39
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[TOKYO] Tokyo stocks fell 0.20 per cent Friday morning following a five-day rally and after the European Central Bank decided not to expand its stimulus programme.

The Nikkei 225 index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange - which hit a seven-year high Thursday - slipped 36.30 points to 17,850.91 by the break while the Topix index of all first-section issues was down 0.09 per cent, or 1.33 points, at 1,439.27.

The Nikkei climbed 3.6 per cent in the five sessions to Thursday thanks to a weakening yen, a Wall Street rally and hopes for a decisive win for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in elections this month.

However, Hiroichi Nishi, general manager of equity at SMBC Nikko Securities, said investors decided to cash in ahead of the release later Friday of US jobs figures, which will help guide the Federal Reserve's monetary policy.

The European Central Bank also disappointed markets by refusing to unveil any fresh easing measures at its final policy meeting of the year despite the eurozone's tepid growth and anaemic inflation.

Stimulus efforts by major central banks tend to support asset prices globally.

The dollar fetched 119.87 yen in midday trade on Friday, moving narrowly after rising past 120 yen briefly on Thursday to hit a fresh seven-year high.

Shares in Takata sank 0.30 per cent to 1,327.0 yen, while Toyota was up 0.21 percent at 7,747.0 yen and Honda added 0.13 per cent to 3,730.0 yen.

AFP