Tokyo shares close 0.15% lower
TOKYO–Tokyo shares closed 0.15 percent lower on Friday, hit by sharp falls in mobile carrier Softbank and clothing company Fast Retailing.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange closed slightly down 0.15 percent, or 12.66 points, to 8,534.12, but the Topix index of all first-section issues was up 0.61 percent or 4.37 points at 718.32.
Shares in Softbank plunged nearly 17 percent after a report that the mobile company is eyeing a multi-billion-billion buy-in to the US telecom market, including what could become one of Japan’s biggest-ever overseas acquisitions.
Softbank closed at 2,395 yen, down 16.86 percent, after the Nikkei economic daily said it was in takeover talks with US wireless carrier Sprint Nextel, with plans to also purchase a smaller firm.
The Nikkei said total costs would likely exceed 2 trillion yen ($25 billion).
Shares of Softbank’s rival KDDI was up 1.19 percent at 5,910, one of the heaviest-weighted positive contributors to the Nikkei.
Softbank was once the only Japanese mobile operator to offer the wildly popular iPhone. But it now has a rival after KDDI Corp, the country’s second largest carrier, also struck a deal to carry Apple’s handsets.
“The total Sprint-related transactions, if successful, will saddle Softbank with significant, albeit not crippling, debt,” Kenichi Hirano, market analyst at Tachibana Securities, told Dow Jones Newswires.
Fast Retailing, the operator of Uniqlo clothing stores, fell 9.93 percent to 16,040 yen after its earnings report fell short of expectations.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.