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Japan stocks fall on subprime losses

Source:ap.org Author:Unknown Date:03/25/14 Click:

TOKYO - Japanese shares fell Friday after Japanese banks reported larger-than-expected losses due to the subprime mortgage crisis. A slump in China's Shanghai Stock Exchange also weighed on Tokyo trade.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 stock index lost 95.31 points, or 0.70 percent, to close at 13,497.16 on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. The index rose 1.85 percent the previous day.

Japan's banks were in focus after the week's revelations of widening subprime losses. Megabanks Mizuho Financial Group and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group both reported on Thursday wider-than-expected losses due to the U.S. loan crisis.

Mizuho's shares fell 5 percent to 473,000 yen, while MUFG dropped 3.7 percent to 995 yen.

Real estate companies also tumbled on worries over Japan's stuttering economy. Mitsubishi Estate Co. dropped 4.43 percent to 2,695 yen and Mitsui Fudosan Co. fell 2.26 percent at 2,375 yen.

Japanese shippers, though, gained on bargain-hunting, with NYK Line up 4.38 percent at 905 yen and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines up 3.24 percent at 1,336 yen.

Elsewhere, stocks in Shanghai fell in early trade, hurt by concerns about the economic impact of heavy snowfalls in China that have caused a massive national disruption. The Shanghai Composite index was down 1.9 percent in midafternoon trade.

Worry that the snows will possibly slow China's economic growth in the first quarter have pushed down China-related shares in Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan.

The broader Topix index, which includes all shares on the exchange's first section, fell 9.45 points, or 0.70 percent, to 1,336.86.

In currencies, the U.S. dollar bought 106.40 yen at 2:50 p.m. Friday, down from 106.43 yen late Thursday in New York. The euro fell to $1.4864 from $1.4877.

___

From Dow Jones Newswires

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