Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average fell 57.59, or 0.7 percent, to 8,664.58 as of the 3 p.m. trading close in Tokyo. The following are among the most active shares in the Japanese market today. Stock symbols are in parentheses after company names.
Machinery makers: Japan’s machinery orders, an indicator of capital spending, unexpectedly dropped 6.9 percent in October, the Cabinet Office reported today. The median forecast of 27 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News called for a 0.5 percent gain.
Komatsu Ltd. (6301 JT), Japan’s largest construction machinery maker, fell 0.7 percent to 2,007 yen. Sumitomo Heavy Industries Ltd. (6302 JT) dropped 0.4 percent to 459 yen.
Kansai Electric Power Co. (9503 JT) fell 2.9 percent to 1,103 yen. The utility will shut a 500-megawatt nuclear reactor in Mihama, Fukui prefecture because of a malfunction, company spokesman Akihiro Aoike said.
Olympus Corp. (7733 JT), an optical-equipment maker, rose 4.4 percent to 1,178 yen. President Shuichi Takayama acknowledged Michael Woodford, the chief executive officer he helped fire, for exposing a cover-up of losses at the camera maker and announced a probe of about 70 executives that may have been involved.
Showa Denko K.K. (4004 JT), a maker of chemical products, rose 2.6 percent to 160 yen. Nomura Securities Co. raised its investment rating on the company to “buy” from “neutral.” Western Digital Corp. is expected to continue to buy Showa’s hard-disk products, diminishing risk Western would reduce purchases following the floods in Thailand, Nomura analyst Satoshi Fujiwara wrote in a report.
Sumco Corp. (3436 JT), a silicon-wafer producer, slid 4.5 percent to 641 yen after forecasting a loss of 9 billion yen ($116 million) for the fiscal year ending January, citing the yen’s appreciation and sluggish demand for personal computers. The company previously expected a gain of 2.5 billion yen.
Token Corp. (1766 JT), a homebuilder, fell 5.2 percent to 2,610 yen. It cut its net-income forecast 7.9 percent to 3.02 billion yen for the year ending April 2012, citing a drop in construction revenue.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. (9501 JT), the utility at the center of the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl, dropped 11.3 percent to 244 yen after the Mainichi newspaper said the government will take the company over.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said it is “too early” for government ministers to discuss whether to nationalize the utility. Fujimura, speaking to reporters today in Tokyo, said the utility hasn’t approached the government to request public funds.