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Japanese Market Modestly Lower

The Japanese stock market is modestly lower on Monday and the safe-haven yen strengthened following the weak cues from Wall Street Friday amid worries about tensions in the Middle East. Investors are also cautious as they looked ahead to Trump-Xi Jinping meeting at the G-20 summit later this week.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is lower by 24.47 points or 0.12 percent to 21,234.17, after touching a low of 21,185.67 in early trades.

Market heavyweight SoftBank is up 0.3 percent and Fast Retailing is adding 0.2 percent. In the auto space, Honda Motor is rising 0.4 percent and Toyota Motor is edging up 0.1 percent.

The major exporters are mixed on a stronger yen. Mitsubishi Electric and Panasonic are lower by almost 1 percent each, while Canon is adding 0.2 percent and Sony is advancing more than 1 percent.

Among tech stocks, Tokyo Electron is losing 2 percent and Advantest is down 0.4 percent. In the oil sector, Japan Petroleum is adding 0.2 percent while Inpex is lower by 0.6 percent.

Among the major gainers, JGC Corp. is rising almost 3 percent, while Fukuoka Financial and Daiichi Sankyo are all higher by more than 2 percent each.

On the flip side, Familymart UNY is losing almost 3 percent and Sky Perfect JSAT is lower by more than 2 percent.

In economic news, Japan will provide final April figures for its leading and coincident indexes, as well as May results for supermarket sales today.

In the currency market, the US dollar is trading in the lower 107 yen range on Monday.

On Wall Street, stocks closed modestly lower on Friday in choppy trading as traders seemed cautious amid escalating between tensions between the U.S. and Iran. Traders were also looking ahead to next week's G-20 summit in Japan, where Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are due to meet in an effort to revive trade talks.

The Dow edged down 34.04 points or 0.1 percent to 26,719.13, the Nasdaq slipped 19.63 points or 0.2 percent to 8,031.71 and the S&P 500 dipped 3.72 points or 0.1 percent to 2,950.46.

The major European markets also saw modest weakness on Friday. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index dipped by 0.2 percent, the German DAX Index and the French CAC 40 Index both edged down by 0.1 percent.

Crude oil prices moved higher on Friday, extending gains from previous session, as an escalation in tensions between the U.S. and Iran raised concerns about a disruption in global crude supplies. WTI crude for August added $0.36 or 0.6 percent to close at $57.43 a barrel.

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