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Market Update

Japan Stocks Unchanged, Kintetsu in Merger Talks with APL in Singapore

Author: Hiruki Nakamura
Last Update: 8:32 AM ET February 17 2015

4:30 PM Tokyo – Stocks in Tokyo edged lower in international worries. China reported ninth monthly decline in home prices and European finance ministers issued an ultimatum to Greece to stick to bailout terms for any new loan request. The yen gained against the dollar.

Stocks in Tokyo struggled as investors focused on the Greek negotiations and home prices across China declined 5%.

Market tone was defensive and the yen strengthened after the euro zone finance ministers issued an ultimatum to Greece to seek an extension of bailout for new loans with no revisions in debt terms.

Home prices in 64 of 70 largest cities in China declined for the ninth month in a row, according to the latest data released by the National Bureau of Statistics.

Home prices declined 0.4% in January from the previous month and declined at an annual 5.1% from a year ago month, fifth monthly decline. On an annual basis prices declined 4.3% in December.

China’s once red hot housing market has been cooling for a year as investors shift to stock market and the government tightened lending regulations in the last six months.

The Nikkei 225 Stock Average fell 17.68 to 17,987.09 and the broader Topix index rose to 2.64 to 1,462.07.

The yen closed at 118.62 against one dollar.

Stocks in Review

Dentsu Inc closed unchanged at 4,865 yen after the advertising and marketing company’s unit Dentsu Aegis Network Ltd agreed to acquire 51% stake in Soap Creative Pty Ltd, a digital creative agency in Australia with an option to acquire the remaining stake.

F@N Communications Inc tumbled 14.2% to 1,190 yen after the advertising service provider reported January sales growth slowed to 18% from 25% in December and 38% in November.

Kintetsu World Express Inc declined 4.6% to 4,855 yen after the Nikkei news reported airfreight logistic company is in final stages to acquire Singapore-based APL Logistics for an estimated value of 140 billion yen or $1.17 billion.

Kintetsu World forecasted group sales for the year to climb 10% to 310 billion yen and a net profit to jump 7% to 10.1 billion yen.

Lixil Group Corp slipped 1.3% to 2,679 yen after the sanitary and building products maker announced a convertible bond issue worth about 120 billion yen or $1 billion to pay the debt and also plans to use 20 billion yen buy back its own shares.

Orix Corporation dropped 2% to 1,533 yen after the Kyodo News reported financial leasing service provider may participate in loan and lease restructuring of the bankrupt airliner Skymark Airlines Inc.

Japanese investment fund, Integral Corp had offered to support a loan of 9 billion yen to the airline.

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