Topix Index Tumbles as Yen Rises, Consumer Lenders Slide
All but one of the 33 Topix (TPX) industry groups retreated. Toyota Motor Corp., the world’s biggest carmaker, decreased 1.3 percent after rising as much as 1.1 percent. Aiful Corp. plunged 10 percent, pacing declines among consumer lenders, after saying it would not provide a full-year forecast as the outlook is “uncertain.” Kirin Holdings Co., Japan’s biggest beverage maker, tumbled 9.2 percent to lead declines on the Nikkei 225 Stock Average after its net-income forecast missed estimates.
The Topix slid 1.3 percent to 1,183.82 at the close in Tokyo, reversing gains of as much as 0.8 percent. The measure fell 0.4 percent this week, capping its longest weekly losing streak since June 2012. The Nikkei 225 slid 1.5 percent today to 14,313.03. The yen gained 0.3 percent to 101.84 per dollar, after falling as much as 0.2 percent.
“The stock market is highly sensitive to the yen,” said Yutaka Miura, a senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities Co., a unit of Japan’s third biggest lender by market value. “Positive earnings results are taken for granted. The market reacts more to negatives than positives because good results have already been priced in.”
The Topix tumbled 9.1 percent this year, the most among major developed markets, as signs of a slowdown in China and a rout in developing-market currencies as the Federal Reserve cuts stimulus stoked concern about the global economy.
The measure jumped 51 percent in 2013 as the Bank of Japan’s unprecedented monetary easing to beat deflation weakened the yen. The central bank next meets Feb. 17-18.
Exporters fell today as a stronger yen clouded their earnings outlook. Toyota lost 1.3 percent to 5,813 yen. Sony Corp., a TV maker that gets about 68 percent of revenue abroad, declined 1.5 percent to 1,703 yen.
Of the 286 companies on the Topix that reported quarterly earnings from the beginning of January through yesterday and for which estimates are available, 66 percent beat analysts’ profit estimates, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Aiful slumped 10 percent to 306 yen after providing no full-year forecasts, saying developments in claims for repayment of excessive interest charges are unclear.
Kirin tumbled 9.2 percent to 1,293 yen, the most since March 2011. Net income will probably fall 43 percent to 49 billion yen ($481 million) this year, Kirin said in a statement yesterday. That compares with the 60.6 billion yen average of 13 analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg.
Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fell 0.3 percent. The gauge rose 0.6 percent yesterday as better-than-forecast earnings and a $45 billion takeover of Time Warner Cable Inc. outweighed the biggest drop in retail sales last month since June 2012. Jobless claims increased by 8,000 to 339,000 in the week ended Feb. 8.
The Topix traded at 1.17 times book value today, compared with 1.28 at the start of the year and 2.59 for the S&P 500 yesterday.
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