Nikkei ends down 1.35% over caution for US plan

Nikkei ends down 1.35% over caution for US plan

Tokyo: Japan’s Nikkei average fell 1.3% on Monday, down for a third day as investor caution about the implementing of a US bailout plan for the financial sector outweighed initial relief that a deal was being done.

Major banks shed much of their gains or sank into negative territory, while blue-chip exporters such as Toyota Motor Corp fell sharply on worries about the global economic outlook.

The benchmark Nikkei ended down 149.55 points at 11,743.61, although it had earlier risen more than 1%. The broader Topix lost 1.7% to 1,127.87.

Larger banks shed much of their gains or sunk into negative territory, while blue chip exporters like Toyota Motor Corp. fell on worry about the global economic outlook.

US Congressional leaders from both parties said they had a tentative agreement on Sunday, and lawmakers prepared to vote on Monday on a $700 billion government fund to buy bad debt.

“Investors want to wait to see how the US plan works. They haven’t been able to pass judgement on it yet," said Yukio Takahashi, market analyst at Shinko Securities.

Investors were also starting to turn their eyes to crucial economic indicators due out later this week, including the Bank of Japan’s quarterly “tankan" survey of business sentiment on Wednesday and US employment data on Friday.

Japan’s third-largest lender Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group fell 1% to 682,000 yen, while No. 2 Mizuho Financial Group was up 0.2% at 469,000 yen.

Toyota fell 1.7% to 4,660 yen, and Honda Motor Co Ltd lost 1.2% to 3,300 yen.

Energy shares were hit after oil extended losses, with Mitsui and Co. down 7% at 1,324 yen. Oil and gas explorer Inpex Holdings shed 3.6% to 943,000 yen.