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Japan Shares Snap 4-Day Winning Run as Sony, Panasonic Drag

TOKYO, Feb 3 (Reuters) - Japanese shares snapped a four-day winning streak on Thursday, weighed down by weaker Nasdaq futures, while investors sold tech stocks amid worries over Sony Group's gaming business and a drop in Panasonic's quarterly profit.

The Nikkei share average fell 1.06% to 27,241.31, while the broader Topix lost 0.86% to 1,919.92.

All three Wall Street benchmarks ended higher overnight, but the mood turned sour in post-market trade when Facebook-owner Meta Platforms Inc plunged as much as 22% after missing analysts' earnings estimates and posting a weaker-than-expected forecast.

"The Japanese market was dragged down by declines in U.S. futures this morning, which fell because of the losses in Meta shares outside trading hours," said Takatoshi Itoshima, a strategist at Pictet Asset Management.

"And, Japanese companies seemed to have lost their momentum," Itoshima said, adding forecasts of some companies were strong but the overall growth in profit had slowed.

Shares of Sony Group fell 6.08% after four straight sessions of gains, as concerns about the company's gaming business re-emerged amid component shortages and competition from bigger rivals. 

Panasonic lost 6.86% after the industrial conglomerate posted a bigger-than-expected 44% slide in third-quarter operating profit. 

Other technology heavyweights also fell, with chip-making equipment maker Tokyo Electron losing 2.3% and medical technology platform M3 Inc shedding 9.19%.

Japan Airlines lost 1.91% after the airliner forecast an annual net loss of 146 billion yen.

Rival ANA Holdings fell 0.88%.

Bucking the trend, NTT gained 1.68% after a report said the phone company's operating profit for the nine months through December would rise 3% to about 1.55 trillion yen. 

Reporting by Junko Fujita; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

Source: Reuters

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