Tokyo shares close lower

TOKYO (AFP): Tokyo shares closed lower on Monday, dragged down by market heavyweight SoftBank Group, which tanked more than 12 percent after reporting a half-year net loss.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index lost 1.06 percent, or 300.10 points, to end at 27,963.47, while the broader Topix index fell 1.05 percent, or 20.86 points, to 1,956.90.

Analysts said traders locked in profits after a positive session on Friday, when the Nikkei advanced nearly three percent on hopes for less aggressive Federal Reserve rate hikes due to slowing US inflation.

The dollar fetched 139.35 yen, up from around 138.70 yen in New York late Friday — a retreat from the multi-decade highs of beyond 151 yen hit last month.

“While US stocks surged on expectations of an early end to the Fed’s interest-rate hikes, the US dollar fell sharply,” said chief strategist Masayuki Kubota of Rakuten Securities.

SoftBank Group dived 12.72 percent to 6,068 yen after the company reported a net loss of 129 billion yen in the April-September period, brought down by its record net loss in the first quarter.

In the second quarter, however, it posted a net profit thanks to gains from the recent reduction of its stake in Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba.

Olympus plunged 10.81 percent to 2,758.5 after it cut its full-year operating profit forecast and reported a lower-than-expected second-quarter operating profit.
Nissan fell 1.32 percent to 492.9 yen while Toyota slipped 0.74 percent to 1,986 yen. Nintendo dropped 1.73 percent to 5,659 yen.