Japan shares lose ground on weak US economy data

Tokyo, Jan 18 (IANS) Japan shares opened the trading Monday sharply lower as sentiment was hit by weak US economic data and declines on Wall Street last week, with the Nikkei index briefly falling to a one-year closing low.

At 9.15 a.m. (local time), the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average plunged 475.49 points, or 2.77 percent, from Friday to 16,671.62, Xinhua reported.

The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was down 36.83 points, or 2.63 percent, to 1,365.62.

Chinese shares open low

Chinese stocks opened lower on Monday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index down 1.84 percent, at 2,847.54 points.

The smaller Shenzhen index opened 1.91 percent lower at 9,807.25 points, Xinhua reported.

The ChiNext Index, tracking China’s NASDAQ-style board of growth enterprises, lost 1.8 percent to open at 2,074.86 points.

Chinese yuan strengthens

The central parity rate of the Chinese currency renminbi (yuan) strengthened by 47 basis points to 6.559 against the US dollar on Monday, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trading System.

In China’s spot foreign exchange market, the yuan is allowed to rise or fall by two percent from the central parity rate each trading day, Xinhua reported.

The central parity rate of the yuan against the US dollar is based on a weighted average of prices offered by market makers before the opening of the interbank market each business day.

Sensex sheds 97 points in early trade

A benchmark index of Indian equities markets, the 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex), on Monday was trading 96.64 points, or 0.40 percent down during the morning session.

The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) was also trading 24.40 points, or 0.33 percent down at 7,413.40 points.

The Sensex of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 24,400.78 points, was trading at 24,358.40 points (at 9.24 a.m.) in the early session, down 96.64 points or 0.40 percent from the previous day’s close at 24,455.04 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 24,524.85 points and a low of 24,352.81 points in the trade so far.

Japan shares end sharply lower

Tokyo, Jan 18 (IANS) Japan shares lost ground by ending the morning session on trading Monday following weak US economic data and poor performance on Wall Street last week, with its benchmark Nikkei index plunging over 400 points briefly.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average tumbled 333.01 points, or 1.94 percent from Friday to 16,814.10, Xinhua reported.

The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was down 25.80 points, or 1.84 percent, to 1,376.65.

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