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Market Update

Japan Stocks in Holding Pattern, Bridgestone Estimates Higher Earnings

Author: Hiruki Nakamura
Last Update: 10:16 AM ET February 19 2013

5:00 PM Tokyo – Stocks in Tokyo edged lower and the yen gained against the dollar. Prime minister will delay the appointment of Bank of Japan governor after his return from a trade summit talks with President Obama later this week. Bridgestone soared on earnings surprise.

Stocks in Tokyo took a breather after rising sharply last week and the yen strengthened.

Finance minister Aso said he is not looking to buy foreign bonds to stimulate the economy a day after Prime Minister Abe Shinzo said buying international bonds remains one option.

Also, prime minister will appoint a new governor of Bank of Japan after a summit with President Barack Obama in Washington February between February 21 and 24. The summit is scheduled to focus on Japan’s entry into a regional free trade that may lead to new growth initiatives.

The Nikkei 225 Stock Average slipped 35.53 to 11,372.34 and the broader Topix Index gained 0.92 to 963.61.

The yen strengthened to 93.56 against one dollar after Finance Minister Taro Aso said at a news conference that he was not looking to buy foreign bonds to stimulate the economy.

The latest statement from finance minister contradicted the Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s comments in the parliament yesterday. Abe told lawmakers that buying foreign bonds

Stocks in Review

Bridgestone jumped 10% to 2,820 yen after the tire maker estimated net income to rise to 235 billion yen or $2.5 billion in the current financial year.

Grandy House soared 8.3% to 886 yen after the company announced a stock split.

The yen weakness lifted the makers of automobiles and electronics.

Toyota Motor Corp. dropped 45 yen to 4,740 yen and Honda Motor Co. slipped 15 yen to 3,490 yen and Nissan Motor Co Ltd decreased 10 yen to 940 yen. Mazda Motor Corp fell 2 yen to 273 yen. Yamaha Motor Co Ltd declined 25 yen to 1,037 yen.

Nippon Steel added 2 yen to 262 yen and JFE Holdings Inc gained 17 yen to 2,071 yen.

Sony advanced 22 yen to 1,351. Canon Inc slumped 15 yen to 3,295 yen and Nikon rose 6 yen to 2,147 yen. TDK Corp decreased 40 yen to 3,300 yen.

Nintendo Co. Ltd declined 130 yen to 8,680 yen. Dainippon Screen Manufacturing Co slipped 9 yen to 474 yen.

Machine tools makers declined after orders to China plunged 65% from a year ago month in January, according to the data released by the Japan Machine Tool Builder’s Association.

Fanuc Corp. dropped 620 yen or 4.1% to 14,530 yen and Komatsu Ltd slumped 21 yen to 2,395 yen. Hitachi Construction Machinery Co gained 14 yen to 2,180 yen.

Sumida Corp increased 8 yen to 530 yen. Asahi Glass rose 6 yen to 651 yen. Softbank Corp declined 40 yen to 3,410 yen.

FamilyMart Co Ltd, the convenience chain operator climbed 50 yen to 3,890 yen and Lawson jumped 160 yen to 7,090 yen. Ito En Ltd increased 19 yen to 1,836 yen.

Fast Retailing slipped 70 yen to 25,320 yen after the company was speculated to target Gap Inc according to a report on CNBC.

Seven & I Holdings Co slid 2 yen to 2,799 yen. Fast Retailing Co. fell 70 yen to 25,320 yen and J. Front Retailing Co. Ltd gained 7 yen to 550 yen.

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group up 1 yen to 534 yen and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group slipped 10 yen to 3,810 yen. Dai-Ichi Life slid 1% to 133,500 yen. Nomura Holdings, Inc gained 7 yen to 548 yen.

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