TOKYO, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 30th Jan, 2017 ) : Tokyo stocks closed lower Monday as a stronger Yen hit exporters and investors took profits, while sentiment was also hit by concerns over President Donald Trump's controversial immigration moves. The Nikkei enjoyed a healthy run last week as traders tracked a record performance on Wall Street and the yen retreated against the greenback on expectations Trump will follow through with economy-boosting fiscal measures.
However, a weak reading on US growth Friday came as Trump issued an executive order banning travellers from seven countries, which has been met with widespread global protest and condemnation. The move followed a series of divisive outbursts by the tycoon in his first week in office, including a row with Mexico over trade and his proposed border wall, rows with the media over his inauguration crowds and unsupported assertions that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election.
"Concerned about uncertain elements such as Trump's policies, players are adjusting their positions following the recent gain," said Hikaru Sato, senior technical analyst at the investment strategy section at Daiwa Securities. The benchmark Nikkei 225 index ended down 0.51 percent, or 98.55 points, at 19,368.85, while the Topix index of all first-section issues slipped 0.35 percent, or 5.48 points, to 1,543.77. "The appreciation of the yen also pressured exporters," Sato told AFP.
A stronger yen is a negative for Japanese exporters because it makes their products less competitive abroad and shrinks repatriated profits. The Dollar fell to 114.49 yen Monday from 115.06 yen in New York. Japan's latest earnings season kicks into high gear this week, with Sony, Panasonic and Nintendo among those reporting. The Bank of Japan's first policy meeting of 2017 and Japanese economic data are also in focus, analysts said. US stocks finished little changed Friday following the lacklustre fourth-quarter growth report and some high-profile earnings disappointments including from Chevron, Google parent Alphabet.