Tokyo stocks move unsteadily over virus and inflation worries
Published : Wednesday, 1 December, 2021 at 5:44 PM Count : 412
Tokyo stocks moved unsteadily between positive and negative territory in directionless trade Wednesday as investors remained cautious about a new virus strain and US monetary policy moves over inflation.
After opening higher, stocks dipped before recovering slightly by an hour into trade, with the benchmark Nikkei 225 index up 0.23 percent, or 64.77 points, to 27,886.53.
The broader Topix index was up 0.20 percent, or 3.92 points, to 1,932.27.
The erratic movement followed a global market rout after Moderna's chief warned current vaccines might be less effective at fending off the Omicron variant, and the US Fed chief warned of higher inflation for longer than expected.
"Uncertainties over the prospects for US monetary policy and concerns over the new strain of the coronavirus are seen prompting sell-orders," Mizuho Securities said in a note.
Senior analyst Hideyuki Suzuki of SBI Securities told AFP that "the Moderna chief's comments were factored in during the previous Tokyo session to some extent, but worries over the US Federal Reserve's moves to hike interest rate to address inflation are weighing on the market."
Investors will be watching how other Asian bourses and US futures move later in the day, analysts said.
The dollar fetched 113.25 yen in early Asian trade, against 113.16 yen in New York late Wednesday.
Among major shares in Tokyo, Canon was up 2.14 percent at 2,553.5 yen and industrial robot maker Fanuc climbed 3.62 percent to 23,050 yen after brokerage houses raised their evaluation of the shares.
Sony Group was down 0.47 percent at 13,760 yen and IT and system developer Fujitsu was off 0.96 percent at 18,615 yen but game giant Nintendo was up 0.96 percent at 50,580 yen.