Investors in Japan Take Profits Ahead of US Job Figures
The Tokyo stock exchange closed with a loss on Friday. Investors took some gains after the recent strong rally and were particularly looking forward to the critical US jobs report, due later in the day.
Strong job growth in the United States could prompt the Federal Reserve to scale back its stimulus policy earlier than expected. On Thursday, data came out that point to a strong recovery in the labour market in the world’s largest economy.
The leading Nikkei in Tokyo went 0.4 percent lower into the weekend at 28,941.52 points. The technology companies were sold in the wake of the price losses among US peers. Tech investor SoftBank lost more than 1 percent, and robot maker Fanuc fell 2 percent.
Car manufacturer Toyota, on the other hand, continued the advance and climbed more than 1 percent to a new record level. The Japanese railway companies also made further progress hoping that people will take the train more often due to the acceleration of the vaccination program in Japan.
China’s stock markets have shown a mixed picture following news that US President Joe Biden has blacklisted more Chinese companies. A total of 59 companies are now on the list. According to Washington, American companies and investors are not allowed to do business with these companies because they have close ties with the Chinese military. The Shanghai stock market gained 0.3 percent, and the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong lost 0.3 percent.
Chinese online retailer Alibaba fell 0.1 percent in Hong Kong. Ant Group, Alibaba’s payment company, has received approval from Chinese authorities to operate as a consumer finance company. The approval is an essential step in the forced restructuring of Ant Group’s operations. Beijing held off Ant Group’s IPO last year over concerns over the oversight of the company’s credit activities.