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Japanese Market Declines On Weak U.S. Jobs Data, Stronger Yen

The Japanese market is trading weak on Monday with investors pressing sales amid concerns about the eurozone economy. A weak U.S. jobs data and the yen's surge against the U.S. dollar are also contributing to the weakness in the market.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index, which declined to around 9,535, is currently trading at 9,555.9, down 132.6 points or 1.4 percent from its previous close.

Among the stocks on the Nikkei index, only Kawasaki Kisen, Chiyoda Corp, KDDI Corp, Seven & I Holdings and Takeda Pharmaceuticals are currently trading in positive territory.

Nippon Light Metal is down more than 4.5 percent. Unitika, Daiwa Securities Group, Dai-ichi Life Insurance, Heiwa Real Estate, Furukawa Electricity, Oki Electricity, Nikon Corp, Tosoh and Taiyo Yuden are all down 3 to 4 percent.

Sony Corp, T&D Holdings Inc., Mitsui Mining, Fujikura, Mitsubishi Materials, Showa Denko KK, Sumco Corp, JFE Holdings, Nomura Holdings, Advantest Corp, Nisshin Steel, Toho Zinc and J Front Retailing are also trading sharply lower, losing between 2.2 to 2.8 percent.

Among bank stocks, Shinsei Bank, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial and SMFG are down 2 to 3 percent. Bank of Yokohama and Aozora Bank are trading lower by 1.5 percent and 1.8 percent, respectively, and Shizuoka Bank, Chiba Bank and Mizuho Financial are trading lower by 0.6 to 1 percent.

Among automobile stocks, Suzuki Motor, Nissan Motor, Honda Motor and Hino Motors are down 2 to 3.3 percent, while Mitsubishi Motor, Isuzu Motors and Toyota Motor are trading lower by 1 to 1.6 percent.

According to the data released by the Ministry of Finance, Japan saw a current account surplus of 1.177 trillion yen in February. That beat forecasts for a surplus of 1.120 trillion yen after posting a shortfall of 437.3 billion yen in January.

The trade balance came in below forecasts at 102.1 billion yen, shy of expectations for 104.3 billion yen after showing a deficit of 1.381 trillion yen in the previous month. Imports jumped 11.1 percent on year to 5.145 trillion yen, while exports shed an annual 2.0 percent to 5.247 trillion yen.

The adjusted current account showed a surplus of 854.1 billion yen, blowing past expectations for a surplus of 650.0 billion yen after posting a surplus of 115.6 billion yen a month earlier.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar traded in the lower 81 yen range in early deals in Tokyo. The yen is currently trading at 81.44 to the U.S. dollar. Against the euro, the yen rose to 106.18 before retreating to around 106.45.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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