TOKYO, Feb. 8 (Xinhua) — Japan’s benchmark Nikkei stock index closed lower Wednesday as bellwether firms reporting disappointing earnings dented investor sentiment.
The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average dropped 79.01 points, or 0.29 percent, from Tuesday to close the day at 27,606.46.
The broader Topix index, meanwhile, edged up 0.57 point, or 0.03 percent, to finish at 1,983.97.
Local brokers said that despite gains on Wall Street overnight, domestic firms’ earnings reports missing market expectations led to selling, with SoftBank Group and Nintendo weighing heavily.
“The two big companies dragged the Nikkei down as a whole, worsening market sentiment,” Koichi Fujishiro, a senior economist at the Dai-ichi Life Research Institute, was quoted as saying.
Softbank slumped 5.1 percent after announcing the previous day a net loss of 912.5 billion yen (6.9 billion U.S. dollars) in the April-December period.
The figure compares to a net profit of 392.6 billion yen (3.0 billion U.S. dollars) booked a year earlier, with the losses in the recording period attributed in part to the yen’s weakness and a global stock slump amid global inflation, the group reported.
The technology and investment giant said that it had incurred 1.4 trillion yen (10.7 billion U.S. dollars) of investment losses in the reporting period.
For the current business year through March, the company opted not to provide its earnings outlook.
Nintendo, meanwhile, tumbled 7.5 percent following the console and games maker lowering its profit outlook for the current business year through March.
Sharp Corp. was the Nikkei’s biggest loser plummeting 12.6 percent on subpar earnings, while Uniqlo clothing chain operator Fast Retailing ended 1.3 percent lower.
Semiconductor-oriented issues found favor, however, bolstered by the Nasdaq ending higher overnight, with chip-testing device maker Advantest adding 2.8 percent, while chip-manufacturing equipment maker Tokyo Electron gained 1.2 percent.
By the close of play, iron and steel and retailer shares led decliners, while notable gainers included pharmaceuticals, and oil and coal products issues.
The turnover on the third trading day of the week came to 2,787.70 billion yen (21.31 billion U.S. dollars).