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Market Update

Japan, China and South Korea Raise Concerns on Washington Deadlock


Author: Hiruki Nakamura
ticker.com
Last Update: 8:46 AM ET October 08 2013

4:45 PM Tokyo – Stocks in Tokyo closed higher in the final hour of trading. The Nikkei ended a 4-day decline in the index and investors shifted focus to domestic earnings as U.S. budget and debt ceiling talks appear to go nowhere on the eighth day of government closure.

Stocks in Tokyo traded lower for the fifth day but market indexes rebounded from a five-week low as investors took a cautious view of budget talk and debt ceiling impasse in Washington.

Policy makers and politicians also expressed worries in China, Japan, South Korea and India and urged U.S. leaders to work out an agreement at the earliest.

China, the largest foreign holder of U.S. debt obligations, holds $1.28 trillion of U.S. Treasury bonds and Japan holds $1.14 trillion of U.S. government debt.

South Korea has already lowered its exposure to the U.S. dollar and the central bank cut its exposure to the world’s reserve currency to 57.3% from 60% in its foreign exchange reserve in March.

South Korea holds $337 billion in foreign reserves at the end of third quarter to September.

The Nikkei 225 Stock Average gained 41.3 or 0.3% to 13,895. In regional trading, market indexes in Hong Kong advanced 0.9%, the Sensex in Mumbai added 0.4% and indexes in Jakarta and in Thailand soared 1.6%.

In trading, investors focused on domestic earnings and economic developments.

Stocks in Review

FamilyMart Co Ltd closed up 1.1% after the convenience store chain operator said its recurring profit in the six-month period ending in August increased 3.1% from a year ago to a record high.

Yahoo Japan fell 10% after the online portal said it would drop some charges for sellers on its site prompting worries that the rising competition may force leading players to lower fees.

Rakuten, the rival e-commerce site also dropped 14%.

Softbank Corp declined 60 or 0.8% to 7,420 yen and on Monday the telecom carrier said net subscriber base increased for the 21st month in a row in September and the rival NTT DoCoMo lost subscribers in the month.

Toyota Motor Corp declined 0.7% to 6,500 yen and Honda Motor Co Ltd gained 0.7% 3,720 yen. Nissan Motor Co Ltd gained decreased 0.8% to 956 yen.

Hino Motors declined 1.2% but Fuji Heavy Industries bucked the trend and added 2.2%.

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Sources: Data collected by 123jump.com and Ticker.com from company press releases, filings and corporate websites. Market data: BATS Exchange. Inc