Highlights

Nikkei dips as investors await Fed meeting

 Publish date: Tue, 18 Jun 2019, 11:34 AM

TOKYO: Japan’s Nikkei edged lower in choppy trade on Tuesday but most investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of a U.S. central bank policy decision later in the week.
 
The Nikkei share average fell 0.3 per cent to 21,067.95 points by the midday break.
 
Expectations that the Federal Reserve (Fed) will start cutting interest rates has helped global markets recover from heavy selling sparked by intensifying global trade disputes.
 
While the Fed Reserve is unlikely to cut rates at its meeting on Wednesday, its statement will be analysed for clues on possible near-term easing moves, analysts said.
 
“The market has nearly priced in hopes for a U.S. rate cut eventually since the Fed chairman made remarks on June 4 suggesting a lower rate,” said Takuya Takahashi, a strategist at Daiwa Securities, adding that the Nikkei will likely trade around 21,500 in relief if the decision is in line with market hopes.
 
Insurers underperformed on expectations for lower rates. Japan Post Insurance declined 0.8% and T&D Holdings skidded one per cent.
 
Tsuruha Holdings, a drugstore operator, bucked the weakness and jumped 5.4 per cent after it said it expects its net profit to grow 5.1 per cent to ¥26.1 billion for the year ending May 2020.
 
Exporters were mixed, with Toyota Motor Corp rising 0.6 per cent, Sony Corp shedding 0.7 per cent and Tokyo Electron dropping 1.2 per cent.
 
Tateru Inc, whose employees were involved in hundreds of cases of tampering with customer loan documents last year, tumbled 16.5 per cent after the Nikkei business daily reported that the land ministry decided to suspend operations.
 
The broader Topix dropped 0.1 per cent to 1,538.22.
 
 - Reuters
 
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