Japanese stocks fell sharply on Tuesday, hit by fears of interest rate rises in the US economy.
The Nikkei 225 closed 1.8 per cent lower at 15,384.86. The Topix fell 1.7 per cent to 1,567.30.
The Mothers market of small and mid-caps, formerly favoured by retail investors, slid 2.8 per cent to 1,355.30.
Concerns about the US pushed down export sectors, with electrical machinery down 1.8 per cent. Kyocera, the electronic components maker, plunged 2.4 per cent to Y9,220. Sony, the consumer electronics and entertainment giant, fell 1.5 per cent to Y5,110. Hitachi down 1.6 per cent to Y763.
US concerns also pushed down most car stocks, for which the US is a huge market. Honda fell 1.3 per cent to Y7,340. Nissan declined 1.9 per cent to Y1,322.
But many of the sharpest declines were among domestic stocks – which, in common with export stocks, have also been tending to follow export stocks upward and downward.
Real estate, a highly volatile sector recently, plunged 3.6 per cent. Mitsui Fudosan, Japan’s biggest property company, fell 2.8 per cent to Y2,300. Mitsubishi Estate, its largest rival, dropped 4.1 per cent to Y2,125.
Softbank, the multimedia services company, declined 3.9 per cent to Y2,440 – sensitive as ever to stock selloffs by retail investors.
Mizuho Trust, the trust bank within the Mizuho banking group, slid another 4.8 per cent to Y280, continuing its fall after Goldman Sachs gave the company an “underperform” rating on Friday.
The sole bright spot was the fish and forest sector, up 1.3 per cent. Japan’s seafood companies have performing well, partly on signs of a growing international market. Nippon Suisan rose 1.4 per cent to Y571, with Maruha up 3.6 per cent to Y342.
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