- Title: JAPAN: Nikkei closes at its lowest level in two months
- Date: 29th September 2009
- Summary: TOKYO, JAPAN (SEPTEMBER 28, 2009) (REUTERS) EXTERIOR OF TOKYO STOCK EXCHANGE STOCK EXCHANGE FLOOR CIRCLING ELECTRONIC STOCK BOARD VARIOUS OF STOCK EXCHANGE OFFICIALS WORKING ELECTRONIC STOCK BOARD ELECTRONIC STOCK BOARD SHOWING NIKKEI STOCK AVERAGE CLOSING AT 10009.52 DOWN 256.46 MORE OF CIRCLING ELECTRONIC STOCK BOARD
- Embargoed: 14th October 2009 13:00
- Location: Japan
- Country: Japan
- Topics: Finance
- Reuters ID: LVAG2R0S2MMRROUAG82TI1UN181
- Story Text: Japanese benchmark Nikkei hits two-month closing low, hurt by yen's surge, while the Japanese finance minister warns he never approved of a strong yen.
Japan's Nikkei average slid 2.5 percent to its lowest close in two months on Monday (September 28), dragged down by exporters such as Honda Motor hit by a sharply stronger yen.
The benchmark Nikkei fell 256.46 points to 10,009.52, its lowest close since late July. It also hit a two-month intra-day low of 9,971.05.
The broader Topix shed 2.2 percent to 902.84.
Japanese Finance Minister Hirohisa Fujii was seen backing further away from earlier comments suggesting intervention was unlikely in the foreign exchange market.
"As prime minister Hatoyama said at the (G20) summit, stable currency moves are desirable, but the recent currency exchange rate seems to be a bit one-sided though I don't see it as a change of trend," Fujii told reporters at the Ministry of Finance on Monday. Fujii said this month a strong yen was generally good as it boosted the purchasing power of the Japanese, though he has been backing away from that comment as the yen's rise gained momentum.
The U.S. dollar fell to an eight-month low of 88.23 yen during on Monday as investors unwound short yen positions and the likelihood the Japanese authorities would intervene began to fade.
The rising yen hit shares of Japan's big exporters, pushing the Nikkei share average <.N225> below 10,000 for the first time in two months and prompting a call from one analyst for the minister to stop making such comments as they were feeding speculative trading.
But Tokyo has not intervened in the currency market since March 2004, after a 15-month-long, 35 trillion yen ($392.6 billion) selling spree aimed at preventing the currency's strength from snuffing out an economic recovery.
Fujii has said he was against intentionally weakening any currency, suggesting Tokyo would refrain from stepping into the currency market to stem the yen's rise against the dollar.
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