Stocks

Nikkei slips on profit-taking; chip shares fall

Reuters Tokyo | Updated on January 18, 2021

Investors booked profits on shares that rallied on hopes of big stimulus spending by the incoming Biden Administration in the US

Japanese stock prices slid on Monday as investors took profits from recent gainers such as semiconductor-related shares following the market’s rapid ascent to a three-decade high earlier this month.

The Nikkei average dropped 0.83 per cent to 28,282.74, slipping further from its 30-year peak of 28,979 touched last week. Still, it was up 3.06 per cent so far this month. The broader Topix lost 0.49 per cent to 1,847.47.

“The market’s rally over the last month has been so fast that many people are feeling that there’s a bit of over-heating here,” said Takeo Kamai, head of execution services at CLSA.

Investors booked profits on shares that rallied on hopes of big stimulus spending by the incoming Biden Administration in the United States.

Semi-conductor shares succumbed to profit-taking also after a Reuters report that the Trump administration notified Huawei suppliers, including chipmaker Intel, that it is revoking certain licences to sell to the Chinese company and intends to reject dozens of other applications to supply the telecommunications firm.

Tokyo Electron fell 1.1 per cent while Advantest lost 1.8 per cent and Screen Holdings shed 0.4 per cent.

Camera maker Nikon dropped 6.1 per cent after having rallied more than 20 per cent earlier this month.

Department store operators also slumped on fears about longer social-distancing restrictions as the country struggled to stem the spread of Covid-19.

Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings lost 5.5 per cent and J Front Retailing fell 3.9 per cent.

Nidec bucked the overall trend to gain 4.4 per cent as investors bet on its strength in motors for electric vehicles.

The market showed a muted response to a raft of Chinese economic data.

Published on January 18, 2021

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