Tokyo stocks open lower on lingering rate hike fears

Tokyo stocks opened lower on Thursday, extending Wall Street's falls on worries about higher interest rates, with a higher yen also weighing on the market.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index fell 0.87 percent, or 190.95 points to 21,877.29 in early trade while the broader Topix index was down 0.93 percent, or 16.43 points, at 1,751.81.

US stocks dropped for the second straight session, as investors continued to digest Tuesday's congressional testimony by new Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell that sparked talk that the US central bank would accelerate the pace of interest rate hikes.

The dollar was trading at 106.61 yen in early Asian trade against 106.71 yen in New York and 107.06 yen in Tokyo on Wednesday.

In addition to fears over higher interest rates and a firm yen, huge portions of sales or purchases “by funds at the beginning of a new month may affect the market” Wednesday, Kyoko Amemiya, senior market advisor at SBI Securities, told AFP – AFP/APP

Posted on: 2018-03-01T10:20:00+05:00