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Tokyo shares drop amid concerns over LDP by-election defeat

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This archive photo shows the Tokyo Stock Exchange. (Mainichi)

TOKYO (Kyodo) – Tokyo shares closed lower on Monday as sentiment weakened after Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party lost one of two byelections held over the weekend, prompting uncertainty as to his fate in the general election on October 31.

The 225-number Nikkei Stock Average finished down 204.44 points, or 0.71%, from Friday at 28,600.41. The largest Topix index of all issues in the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange finished 6.81 points, or 0.34%, down to 1,995.42.

The declines were led by problems related to rubber products, information and communication and air transport.

The US dollar has hovered in the upper range of 113 yen, caught in a tug-of-war between selling in the event of falling US Treasury yields and buying by Japanese importers for settlement, traders said.

High tech issues have driven the Nikkei index down from the start, with the benchmark remaining in a narrow range in negative territory throughout the day as it tracked declines in the Nasdaq index. highly technical at the end of last week.

Investors also feared that the PLD could face an uphill battle in the national elections after losing one of two House of Councilors by-elections on Sunday, suggesting that Prime Minister Fumio Kishida may have difficulty run the government if the ruling parties fail. to perform well.

“The results of the by-election proved that the opposition could possibly fight a good fight this weekend, with fears that the government (under Kishida) will be short-lived if the ruling coalition loses too many seats.” said Masahiro Ichikawa, chief market strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui DS Asset Management Co.

Although media polls suggest the LDP and its coalition partner Komeito will retain their majority in the 465-member House of Representatives, the ruling party risks losing seats as opposition forces work together to consolidate candidates in hundreds of constituencies.

Investors are also keeping their eyes on corporate results expected to be released throughout the week, with particular interest in potential revisions to earnings forecasts, Ichikawa added, amid rising energy costs and rising energy costs. global semiconductor crisis.

On the first section, declining issues outnumbered advances from 1,326 to 736, while 122 ended unchanged.

Blue-chip high-tech stocks were sold following a drop in their US counterparts. SoftBank Group lost 223 yen, or 3.4%, to 6,387 yen, while Tokyo Electron fell 620 yen, or 1.2%, to 50,130 yen.

Some exporters were hit after the yen strengthened against the US dollar late last week. Automakers Nissan Motor fell 7.9 yen, or 1.3%, to 579.3 yen, and Mazda Motor was down 16 yen, or 1.5%, to 1,032 yen.

Contrary to the downtrend, energy-related stocks were higher following the rise in crude oil futures trading in New York City at the end of last week. Inpex climbed 25 yen, or 2.6%, to 976 yen, and Idemitsu Kosan gained 30 yen, or 0.9%, to 3,270 yen.

Chugai Pharmaceutical jumped 405 yen, or 10.5%, to 4,246 yen, after the company on Friday revised its profit forecast for the year to December upward on Friday from the previous estimate in February.

Main section trading volume fell to 1,045.76 million shares from 1,051.24 million shares on Friday.

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