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Market Update

Japan Deficit Surges Four-Fold in in March

Author: Hiruki Nakamura
Last Update: 10:29 AM ET April 21 2014

4:30 PM Tokyo – Market indexes in Tokyo drifted lower and the yen eased after trade deficit in March quadrupled from a year ago. Consumer lending stocks soared on a speculation that the government may loosen restrictions. Drugstore chain Genky said quarterly sales increased 4%.

Stocks in Tokyo eased and the yen weakened and banks and financial services stocks were in focus.

In economic news, Japan’s trade deficit in March quadrupled to 1.45 trillion yen or $14.1 billion from a year earlier, marked a record 21 months in a row of shortfalls. On a seasonally adjusted basis, the deficit grew to 1.71 trillion yen.

The Ministry of Finance said exports in March increased 1.8% to 6.38 trillion yen and imports soared 18.1% to 7.83 trillion yen from a year earlier.

The Nikkei 225 Stock Average slid 3.89 to 14,512.38 and the Topix index fell 1.97 to 1,171.40.

The yen eased to 102.55 against the U.S. dollar.

Stocks in Review

Toyota Motor Corp rose 6 yen to 5,570 yen. Honda Motor Co added 9 yen to 3,436 yen. Nissan Motor Co Ltd slid 0.2% to 897 yen.

Sony closed unchanged at 1,932 yen.

Softbank Corp jumped 99 yen to 7,722 yen. Fast Retailing Co Ltd fell 10 yen to 33,700 yen.

Aiful Corporation surged 11.2% to 346 yen after the Nikkei newspaper reported that the government is considering loosening lending restrictions.

Genky Stores, Inc climbed 2.3% to 2,435 yen after the drugstores operator said net sales in the third-quarter ending on March 20 increased 4.2% to 42.4 billion yen from 40.7 billion yen a year ago period.

Net income in the quarter jumped 103.4% to 631 million yen compared to 310 million yen and diluted earnings per share rose to 180.76 yen from 89 yen a year earlier.

SBI Holdings Inc declined 3.9% to 1,211 yen after the financial services provider reported revenue in the year ending in March soared 71.2% to 74.3 billion from 43.4 billion yen a year ago.

Net income in the year surged 168.3% to 18.07 billion yen compared to 6.73 billion yen a year earlier.

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