Japanese shares end lower as index heavyweights retreat

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
Japanese shares end lower as index heavyweights retreat
Credit: © Reuters.

TOKYO, March 5 (Reuters) - Japanese shares fell for a second straight session on Friday, dragged down by losses in index heavyweights and technology shares, as rising U.S. bond yields hit investor sentiment.

The Nikkei share average .N225 edged down 0.23% to 28,864.32 and recorded its second straight weekly loss. The broader Topix .TOPX closed 0.61% lower at 1,896.18.

The declines followed a weaker overnight finish on Wall Street that left the Nasdaq down nearly 10% from its February record high, as remarks by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell failed to calm investors worried about rising longer-term U.S. bond yields. .N Treasury yields jumped during U.S. trading hours after Powell's speech, sending the 10-year yield to top 1.5%.

"The move of the U.S. long-term bond yields is now the centre of the attention for stock investors," said Yoshihiro Takeshige, general manager at the investment management department of Asahi Life Asset Management.

"If the move of yields will become out of control, Japan's market could be dragged lower, led by declines in U.S. technology shares."

Fast Retailing 9983.T - the operator of Uniqlo clothing stores - fell 3.39% and was the biggest drag on the Nikkei. Staffing agency Recruit Holdings 6098.T declined 6.34%.

Chip-related stocks, which have driven this year's rally, were also lower. Tokyo Electron 8035.T fell 2.47%, while Advantest 6857.T and Fanuc 6954.T lost 1.27% and 0.94%, respectively.

Toshiba 6502.T surged 6.06% as Mizuho Financial Group 8411.T built a 5.07% stake in the energy and infrastructure services firm, following a disclosure of a 5.21% stake by investment fund BlackRock Inc (NYSE: BLK ) BLK.N . largest percentage gainer on the index was Ricoh 7752.T , which rose 8.59%, followed by Citizen Watch 7762.T , up 7.47%, and Casio Computer 6952.T , which firmed 4.55%.

The biggest percentage loser on the index was Hitachi Zosen 7004.T , down 7.5%, followed by Recruit and Pacific Metals Co Ltd 5541.T , which fell 6.25%.

There were 145 advancers on the Nikkei index against 76 decliners.

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