Business
Business

Japan's Nikkei falls on yen concerns

Share price screens in Tokyo
Image caption The Nikkei has enjoyed a strong run since the middle of November last year

Japan's stock market has suffered its biggest one-day fall in eight months after government ministers expressed concerns about the weak yen.

The Nikkei index fell 278.64 points, or 2.6%, to 10,600.44, the day after hitting a near three-year high.

The yen has been weakening against the dollar for two months, but has rebounded in the past two days, raising fears that exports may suffer.

Analysts said traders taking profits on recent gains contributed to the drop.

"It's a correction - some exporters' gains are legitimate, but others aren't, so I am selling exporters which have gained while their fundamentals are still poor, such as Panasonic," said Makoto Kikuchi at Myojo Asset Management in Tokyo.

'Turning point'

Market Data - BBC News

Market Data

Share Prices

Markets

UK markets
UK markets % change Value
Change
-1.49%
7497.87
-113.77
-0.92%
20320.35
-189.41
Europe markets
Europe markets % change Value
Change
-1.56%
552.70
-8.78
-1.82%
5305.22
-98.19
-1.58%
12163.01
-195.86
-1.48%
3359.08
-50.36
-1.26%
9386.80
-120.20
US markets
US markets % change Value
Change
-0.54%
25162.41
-137.51
-1.23%
7774.12
-96.78
-0.76%
2818.37
-21.59
Asia markets
Asia markets % change Value
Change
+0.55%
37852.00
+207.10
-1.55%
27323.59
-429.34
-0.68%
22204.22
-151.86
As of 20:46 15 Aug 2018

Currencies

GBP
% change One £ buys
Change
GBP against Euro
-0.20%
€1.1189
-0.0020
GBP against Yen
-0.52%
¥140.6250
-0.7300
GBP against USD
-0.15%
$1.2701
-0.0020
USD
% change One $ buys
Change
USD against Euro
-0.08%
€0.8809
-0.0010
USD against GBP
+0.13%
£0.7873
+0.0010
USD against Yen
-0.38%
¥110.7250
-0.4250
Euro
% change One € buys
Change
Euro against GBP
+0.20%
£0.8937
+0.0020
Euro against Yen
-0.31%
¥125.6850
-0.3900
Euro against USD
+0.07%
$1.1352
+0.0010
Yen
% change One ¥ buys
Change
Yen against Euro
+0.31%
€0.0080
0.0000
Yen against GBP
+0.52%
£0.0070
0.0000
Yen against USD
+0.38%
$0.0090
0.0000
As of 20:49 15 Aug 2018

Commodities

Oil
Commodity % change dollars per barrel
Change
Brent Crude Oil Futures
-2.35%
70.76
-1.70
WTI Crude Oil Futures
-3.15%
64.93
-2.11
Gold
Commodity % change dollars per ounce
Change
Gold (Forex Index am fix)
0.00%
1195.30
0.00
Gold (Forex Index pm fix)
-0.28%
1197.00
-3.35
Natural Gas
Commodity % change dollars per million BTU
Change
Natural Gas (Henry Hub Futures)
-0.68%
2.94
-0.02
As of 20:49 15 Aug 2018

On Tuesday, Economy Minister Akira Amari warned that the weak yen could hit consumers through higher import prices - comments echoed by Shigeru Ishiba, secretary general of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, on Wednesday.

The yen has strengthened against the dollar this week, with a dollar now buying 88.2 yen.

"The market could be at a turning point, as the resurgent yen sparks selling," said Investrust's Hiroyuki Fukunaga.

A weak yen is seen as important for boosting exports, which are an important component of Japan's economy.

Japan, which is the world's third-largest economy, is currently in a recession, having contracted for two quarters in a row.

Last week, the new government approved a 10.3 trillion-yen ($116bn; £72bn) stimulus package designed to boost growth.

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