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Tokyo: Stocks down more than 2% on virus worries

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The benchmark Nikkei 225 fell 2.13 per cent, or 477.96 points, to close at 21,948.23, while the broader Topix index dropped to 1,568.06.

[TOKYO] Tokyo stocks ended down more than two per cent on Thursday as investors closely tracked headlines over the spreading coronavirus outbreak.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 fell 2.13 per cent, or 477.96 points, to close at 21,948.23, while the broader Topix index dropped to 1,568.06.

"There are concerns over the spread of new coronavirus infections. The first US case with no link to foreign travel also dampened investor sentiment," Okasan Online Securities strategist Yoshihiro Ito said in a commentary.

As Tokyo trade started, President Donald Trump told a news conference the US was prepared to escalate its response to the outbreak on a "much larger scale" should it continue to spread.

The falls in Tokyo came as global stocks finished mixed, somewhat stabilising after two bruising sessions on worries about the spread of the coronavirus.

AFP