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Tokyo shares end 0.47% lower on profit-taking

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Tokyo stocks eased 0.47 percent Friday on profit-taking, although losses were limited by the weak yen and another record close on Wall Street.

The Nikkei index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange closed down 64.02 points at 13,485.14, but the Topix of all first section shares rose 1.28 points, or 0.11 percent, to 1,148.57.

Despite its slip, the market remained well supported on the firming dollar, which was seen moving toward the symbolic 100-yen mark following the Bank of Japan's sweeping monetary easing last week.

The greenback stood at 99.40 yen on Friday afternoon in Tokyo, compared with 99.73 yen in New York on Thursday, where it hit 99.95 yen at one point. The dollar last topped 100 yen in April 2009.

"Some market players cashed in on the recent gains, which sent the Nikkei index down today," said Katsuhiro Kondo, analyst at Tokai Tokyo Securities.

"But the trading trend has fundamentally changed since the new Bank of Japan governor (Haruhiko) Kuroda announced new policies," Kondo said. "The market is expected to keep chasing higher levels for the time being."

Kuroda said he will double Japan's money supply over the next two years to end the deflation that has plagued the nation for roughly 15 years.

The market was watching for an expected missile test by North Korea, but the impact on financial markets was so far limited, Kondo said.

Among major shares, Sharp surged 7.02 percent to 335 yen following a media report that its creditor banks have decided to maintain a loan deal.

Other exporters ended mixed. Sony dropped 1.54 percent to 1,659 yen and Panasonic fell 0.83 percent to 711 yen but Toyota gained 0.35 percent to 5,660 yen.

In New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 0.42 percent to 14,865.14 following better-than-expected numbers on jobless claims, while the S&P 500 rose 0.36 percent to 1,593.37, with both indexes sitting at record highs.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130412/tokyo-shares-end-047-lower-profit-taking-0