Nikkei slips as banks falter; selling in construction sector eases

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
Nikkei slips as banks falter; selling in construction sector eases
Credit: © Reuters.

TOKYO, Dec 21 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average ended down on Thursday, dragged lower by weakness in banking shares though off earlier session lows.

The Nikkei .N225 finished down 0.11 percent, or 25.62 points, at 22,866.10. The broader Topix .TOPX erased losses and eked out a 0.08 percent gain to 1,822.61.

The Bank of Japan's policy meeting announcement, with monetary settings kept unchanged, came during the midday trading break. The widely expected decision had no discernible impact on the market. stocks .IBNKS.T fell 1.1 percent, with Mizuho Financial 8411.T down 1.2 percent and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group 8316.T off 1.25 percent.

The retail subindex .IRETL.T slipped 0.30 percent, led by Fast Retailing 9983.T falling 1.4 percent.

The mining .IMING.T and oil sectors .IPETE.T were among the gainers, up 1.45 percent and 0.94 percent, respectively, as crude oil prices marked strong gains on Wednesday on the back of a drop in U.S. crude inventories. O/R

The battered construction sector .ICNST.T , hit by a slew of bid-rigging allegations, limped back up, adding 0.95 percent. Shimizu Corp 1803.T rose 1.38 percent and Kajima Corp 1812.T was up 2.95 percent.

Japan's Pasona Group Inc 2168.T rose 12.34 percent after touching a record high. The staffing company on Wednesday hiked its operating profit forecast for the six months through Nov. 30.

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