Japan’s Nikkei 225 (NKY) Stock Average fell 103.34, or 1.1 percent, to 9,615.55 as of the close in Tokyo. The following were among the most active shares in the Japanese market today. Stock symbols were in parentheses after company names.
Automakers: Toyota Motor Corp. (7203) (7203 JT) fell 2.4 percent to 3,260 yen. Nissan Motor Co. (7201 JT) slumped 2.2 percent to 715 yen. Honda Motor Co. (7267 JT) lost 2.5 percent to 2,934 yen. Toyota may suspend all of its 14 plants in North America as early as April because parts procurement has been hampered since the March 11 earthquake, the Kyodo News reported. Nissan already said it will suspend production in North America, while Honda disclosed its plan to shorten operating hours in the region, according to Kyodo.
Chip-related companies: Elpida Memory Inc. (6665) (6665 JT), Tokyo Electron Ltd. (8035) (8035 JT) and other chip-related companies after the Semiconductor Industry Association said worldwide sales of semiconductors were $25.2 billion for the month of February 2011, a drop of 1.1 percent from the prior month.
Elpida, the world’s third-biggest maker of memory chips, sank 4.2 percent to 1,068 yen. Tokyo Electron, the world’s second-largest maker of semiconductor equipment, fell 2.8 percent to 4,510 yen. Ibiden Co. (4062 JT), a maker of printed circuit boards, slid 2.3 percent. Tokyo Seimitsu Co. (7729 JT), a chip manufacturing equipment maker, lost 2 percent.
Asahi Co. (3333 JT), a bicycle retailer, slumped 2.8 percent to 1,425 yen. The company said full-year net income rose 2 percent to 2.14 billion yen ($25 million). The profit was below the company’s 2.18 billion yen outlook.
Bookoff Corp. (3313) (3313 JT), a used-book retailer, fell 3.5 percent to 578 yen. The company said March same-store sales dropped 10.9 percent from a year earlier as some stores were suspended or closed earlier than usual closing time after the March 11 earthquake.
Maeda Metal Industries Ltd. (5967) (5967 JO), a wrench maker, surged 15 percent to 196 yen, the highest since December 2009. Makita Corp. (6586) (6586 JT), a maker of power tools, said it will increase its stake in Maeda Metal to 6.83 percent from 3.42 percent as part of its business alliance with Maeda Metal. Makita slid 0.9 percent to 3,835 yen.
Nippon Thompson Co. (6480 JT), a maker of roller bearings, retreated 5.1 percent to 609 yen. The company plans to sell 5 billion yen of five-year convertible bonds to the public, according to a filing with Japan’s finance ministry. The proceeds will be used to invest in production facilities.
Nitori Holdings Co. (9843 JT), a furniture retailer, slipped 2 percent to 7,000 yen. The company said full-year net income rose 29 percent to 30.8 billion yen. The company expects a 13 percent drop in net income to 26.7 billion yen this fiscal year.
OSG Corp. (6136) (6136 JT), a maker of machine tools, lost 3.7 percent to 1,109 yen. The company said first-quarter net income jumped to 627 million yen from 126 million yen a year earlier on a 28 percent gain in sales.
Shin-Kobe Electric Machinery Co. (6934 JT), a maker of storage batteries, surged 13 percent to 1,240 yen, the highest since April 1991. The company has developed a power storage system that can help sustain operations and to reboot in case of power outages, Shin-Kobe said in a statement on its website.
Furukawa-Sky Aluminum Corp. (5741) (5741 JT) tumbled 9.7 percent to 223 yen and Sumitomo Light Metal Industries Ltd. (5738) (5738 JT) slumped 7.6 percent to 98 yen on concerns they may face higher borrowing costs after saying the aluminum products makers, Sumitomo Corp. (8053) (8053 JT), Itochu Corp. (8001) (8001 JT) and Itochu Metals Corp. will jointly acquire ARCO Aluminum Inc. for $680 million from BP Plc. Sumitomo lost 2.9 percent to 1,156 yen. Itochu slid 2.4 percent to 860 yen.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. (9501 JT), operator of the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant stricken by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan, plunged by its daily limit of 80 yen, or 18 percent, to 362 yen, the lowest since its listing in August 1951 after the company began dumping radioactive water into the sea.
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