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Tokyo Stocks Close Lower

July 13, 2001

TOKYO (AP) _ Tokyo stocks closed lower Friday, as investors sold financial and technology shares to cash in on profits from the previous day’s gains. The U.S. dollar was slightly weaker against the yen.

The benchmark 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average slid 52.80 points, or 0.43 percent, to finish at 12,355.15. On Thursday, the average rose 402.84 points, or 3.4 percent.

The dollar bought 124.08 yen at 5 p.m. (0800 GMT), down 0.13 yen from late Thursday in Tokyo but above its late New York level of 123.81 yen. It swung between 123.84 yen and 124.33 yen.

The Nikkei stock index edged up at the start of trading, but soon slipped into negative territory, as investors sold financial issues such as UFJ Holdings and Mitsubishi Tokyo and technology bellwether Softbank Investment to pocket profits from Thursday’s rally. A few investors also appeared to be taking precautions given the market’s recent weakness, traders said.

The Bank of Japan’s decision to keep interest rates near zero was widely anticipated and had little impact on market activity.

The broader Tokyo Stock Price Index of all issues listed on the first section closed down 4.61 points, or 0.37 percent, at 1,244.02. The TOPIX rose 21.06 points, or 1.7 percent, to 1,248.63 the day before.

On the exchange’s first section, decliners outnumbered advancers 660 to 639, and 148 issues were unchanged. An estimated 698.33 million shares traded, up from 591.83 million shares on Thursday.

The dollar retreated slightly against the yen, continuing a downward trek it began overnight in New York.

The euro was traded at 105.76 yen, down from 106.16 yen late Thursday in Tokyo.

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Japanese government bond rose to 1.3200 percent from Thursday’s finish of 1.2700 percent. Its price fell 0.44 point to 98.94.


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