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Tokyo: Stocks open 0.43% lower

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[TOKYO] Tokyo stocks opened 0.43 per cent lower on Thursday, easing off 18-year highs as US and European markets fell on renewed worries over Greek debt talks.

The Nikkei 225 index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange, which climbed to its highest level in more than 18 years, lost 90.34 points to 20,777.69 at the start.

US stocks followed European equity markets lower Wednesday, dropping sharply on signs of fresh problems in talks between Greece and its international creditors aimed at preventing a Greek debt default.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 0.98 per cent in New York while Frankfurt's DAX 30 ended the day down 0.62 per cent.

The euro fetched $1.1205 and 138.81 yen early Thursday, compared with $1.1208 and 138.86 yen yen in New York late Wednesday.

The dollar was changing hands at 123.85 yen against 123.89 yen in US trade.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras held a two-hour late-night meeting Wednesday with the heads of the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank after seven hours of discussions failed to produce a breakthrough.

He has lashed out at lenders for rejecting his reform plans presented to get extra bailout cash before a huge debt payment due on June 30.

Mr Tsipras will continue marathon talks with creditors in Brussels Thursday to thrash out a deal.

AFP