Japanese Market Significantly Lower

The Japanese stock market is significantly lower on Monday, giving up some of the gains in the previous session, with the Nikkei 225 falling below the 27,200 level, following the broadly negative cues from global markets on Friday, as traders continued to assess the impact of the crisis in the global banking sector.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is down 190.63 or 0.70 percent at 27,143.16, after hitting a low of 27,105.71 earlier. Japanese shares ended significantly higher on Friday.

Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is gaining almost 1 percent, while Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing is losing 1.5 percent. Among automakers, Honda is losing almost 1 percent and Toyota is also down almost 1 percent.

In the tech space, Screen Holdings and Advantest are edging down 0.2 to 0.3 percent, while Tokyo Electron is down almost 1 percent.

In the banking sector, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial are gaining almost 1 percent each, while Mizuho Financial is edging down 0.5 percent.

The major exporters are lower. Canon and Panasonic are losing almost 1 percent each, while Sony is edging up 0.3 percent. Mitsubishi Electric is flat.

Among the other major losers, Sapporo Holdings is losing almost 4 percent, while Daiichi Sankyo, Isetan Mitsukoshi and Nippon Yusen K.K. are declining almost 3 percent each.

Conversely, there are no other major gainers.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the lower 132 yen-range on Monday.

On Wall Street, stocks pulled back sharply during trading on Friday after moving sharply higher over the course of Thursday's session. The major averages all showed notable moves to the downside on the day, with the Nasdaq snapping a four-day winning streak.

The major averages finished the session off their worst levels but still firmly negative. The Dow tumbled 384.57 points or 1.2 percent to 31,861.98, the Nasdaq slid 86.76 points or 0.7 percent to 11,630.51 and the S&P 500 slumped 43.64 points or 1.1 percent to 3,916.64.

The major European markets also showed notable moves to the downside on the day. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index slumped 1.0 percent, the German DAX Index and the French CAC 40 Index tumbled by 1.3 percent and 1.4 percent, respectively.

Crude oil prices sank Friday as rising concerns about the health of the banking sector continued to fuel worries about economic growth and the outlook for energy demand. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for April dropped $1.61 or 2.4 percent at $66.74 a barrel. WTI crude futures tumbled 13 percent in the week.

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