Aeon, JGC, Panasonic, Softbank, Toyota: Japan Equity Preview

The following companies may have unusual price changes in Japanese trading today. Stock symbols are in parentheses, and share prices are as of the latest close. The information in each item was released after markets shut unless stated otherwise.

Aeon Co. (8267 JT): Japan’s second-largest retailer said first-quarter operating profit probably rose from a year earlier as cost-cutting measures helped offset lower sales. Aeon may say its March-May operating profit rose 30 percent to about 28 billion yen ($349 million), according to the Nikkei newspaper. The stock rose 0.1 percent to 897 yen.

Electric Power Development Co. (9513 JT), Mitsui & Co. (8031 JT): The companies signed an accord with Russia’s state- controlled OAO RusHydro to cooperate on renewable energy and power conservation projects, the Russian company said. Electric Power, known as J-Power, jumped 7.3 percent to 2,156 yen. Mitsui slid 0.8 percent to 1,277 yen.

JFE Holdings Inc. (5411) (5411 JT) and Nippon Steel Corp. (5401) (5401 JT): The steelmakers had their credit ratings cut by Moody’s Investors Service, which said the companies will find it difficult to pass on rising costs to customers. JFE fell 0.3 percent to 2,006 yen. Nippon Steel rose 0.4 percent to 236 yen.

JGC Corp. (1963) (1963 JT): The plant builder will acquire a 10 percent stake in a shale oil mine in Texas. The company plans to complete the purchase by the end of July following due diligence, according to a statement on its website that didn’t disclose financial terms. The stock slipped 0.5 percent to 2,083 yen.

Kubota Corp. (6326) (6326 JT): The farm equipment maker forecast full-year net income will rise 9.4 percent to 60 billion yen from a year earlier, on a 7.1 percent increase in sales. The stock retreated 0.9 percent to 662 yen.

Mitsubishi Electric Corp. (6503) (6503 JT): The electronics maker said it expects a 37 percent drop in first-half net income to 45 billion yen. The stock advanced 1.4 percent to 886 yen.

Nippon Sheet Glass Co. (5202 JT): The glassmaker will spend 21.6 billion yen to form a unit in Vietnam to increase production capacity, according to a statement. The stock rose 0.8 percent to 241 yen.

Nissan Motor Co. (7201 JT) and Mitsubishi Motors Corp. (7211) (7211 JT): The automakers aim to increase their combined minicar market share to 20 percent from 15 percent now, Junichi Endo, chief executive officer of the companies’ minicar venture said. Nissan dropped 0.6 percent to 795 yen. Mitsubishi Motors was unchanged at 93 yen.

Panasonic Corp. (6752) (6752 JT): The electronics maker forecast net income will fall 59 percent to 30 billion yen in the year to March 2012 after Japan’s March 11 earthquake disrupted factories and suppliers. The stock rose 0.5 percent to 929 yen.

Softbank Corp. (9984) (9984 JT): Japan’s third-largest wireless expects to reach an agreement “soon” on its dispute over Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s sale of the Alipay online-payment unit, Chairman Masayoshi Son said at a media briefing in Seoul. Softbank is the second-biggest shareholder at Alibaba, which spun off its Alipay business without the consent of Softbank and Yahoo! Inc., the largest stakeholder. The stock sank 1.3 percent to 2,822 yen.

Tokai Tokyo Financial Holdings Inc. (8616 JT): The securities company said its board approved it to buy back up to 5.42 percent of its outstanding shares. The stock added 0.5 percent to 199 yen.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. (9501 JT): The owner of the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant plans to formally ask its primary banks, including Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. (8316 JT) and Mizuho Corporate Bank Ltd., to refinance its existing loan balance with lower rates, the Nikkei newspaper reported. Tokyo Electric, battling the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl, had its credit rating cut four steps to junk status by Moody’s Investors Service as costs related to the Fukushima disaster escalated. Tokyo Electric gained 4 percent to 314 yen.

Toyota Motor Corp. (7203) (7203 JT): The automaker will hire 2,000 temporary factory workers in Japan this fall as it increases production, the Nikkei newspaper reported. The stock was unchanged at 3,175 yen.

Zojirushi Corp. (7965) (7965 JO): The manufacturer of rice cookers and thermoses boosted its full-year net income outlook 61 percent to 1.85 billion yen, citing higher overseas sales and lower costs from the stronger yen. The stock slipped 0.9 percent to 221 yen.

To contact the reporter on this story: Norie Kuboyama in Tokyo at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Gentle at

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