Tokyo's Nikkei drops over 1000 points, most in three years

Tokyo’s Nikkei drops over 1,000 points, most in three years

/ 03:21 PM April 19, 2024

TOKYO, Japan — Tokyo’s key Nikkei index saw its largest drop in more than three years on Friday, following reports that Israel carried out strikes on Iran and after chip giant TSMC spooked tech stocks.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index ended down 2.66 percent, or 1,011.35 points, to 37,068.35, marking its largest fall in points since February 2021.

The broader Topix index fell 1.91 percent or 51.13 points to 2,626.32 yen.


Major high-tech and semiconductor shares fell sharply as shares of Taiwanese chip titan TSMC lost 4.9 percent on Wall Street on Thursday after it pointed to “weakening macroeconomic conditions” and softening demand.


Earlier Thursday, TSMC — which dominates the world’s chip-making industry — nonetheless announced a nearly 9 percent increase in net profit in the first quarter.

READ: Asian markets sink, with Japan’s Nikkei down 3.5%

“Asian shares are falling across the board. Semiconductor shares are being sold,” said Chihiro Ota of SMBC Nikko Securities.

He said roughly half of the Nikkei’s loss can be attributed to the semiconductor sector.

Semiconductor firms suffered the most

Tensions in the Middle East were also weighing on the market after Iran’s state media reported explosions were heard in the central province of Isfahan, as the world braced for what might happen next between Israel and the Islamic Republic.

“Things are still very murky. What the market hates the most is uncertainty,” Ota said.


“When things are uncertain and murky, the first reaction of the market is to reduce your position,” he added.

READ: Wall Street drifts to a mixed finish as yields tick higher

The dollar was at 154.37 yen, compared with 154.67 yen on Thursday in New York.

Among major shares in Tokyo, semiconductor firms suffered the most. Tokyo Electron plunged 8.74 percent to 33,530 yen. Advantest lost 4.38 percent to 5,484.

Electronics parts maker TDK dropped 3.37 percent to 7,078 yen and IT investment company SoftBank Group sank 2.89 percent to 7,648 yen.

Sony Group lost 1.80 percent to 12,530 yen after reports said the company was in talks with Apollo Global Management about a potential joint bid for film and TV giant Paramount Global.

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Sony declined to comment.

TAGS: Asian stocks, Japan's Nikkei 225 index

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