Bears Have Upper Hand

GENERIC stock market economy crash down dow nasdaq CBS/AP

A better-than-expected second quarter profits report from Microsoft did little to satisfy investors on markets worldwide Friday.

U.S. stock futures were pushing deeper into the red and the dollar faltered against the euro and yen in pre-open trading. European markets were sliding lower on dour outlooks from tech sentiment-setters Ericsson and Infineon.

Tokyo stocks slumped nearly 3 percent as technology blue chips Sony, NEC and Kyocera took a drubbing after another decline on Wall Street. The dollar was lower against the yen.

The benchmark 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average lost 295.90 points, or 2.82 percent, to close at 10,202.36 Friday. On Thursday, the average gained 202.24 points, or 1.96 percent.

The dollar bought 115.92 yen Friday, down 1.05 yen from late Thursday and below its late New York level of 116.68 yen overnight. It traded between 115.75 yen and 116.63 yen in Tokyo on Friday.

On the stock market, the Nikkei turned lower after Wall Street failed to extend a one day rebound. Among the day's decliners were technology issues Sony, Kyocera and NEC and Advantest as well as telecom stocks NTT, NTT DoCoMo and Japan Telecom.

In New York Thursday, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 132.99 to 8,409.49 at Thursday's close. The Nasdaq composite index closed at 1,356.95, down 40.30.

Investor faith in U.S. stocks remains depressed by the market's weak performance and the recent spate of corporate bookkeeping scandals. At the same time, prospects for an upbeat economic recovery have all but receded. Most analysts now say the U.S. economy particularly corporate profits will at best grow modestly.

The broader Tokyo Stock Price Index of all issues listed on the first section shed 20.41 points, or 2.02 percent, to close at 989.71 Friday. The TOPIX gained 22.02 points, or 2.23 percent, the day before.

On the exchange's first section, an estimated 621.20 million shares traded, down from 747.94 million on Thursday. Declining issues outnumbered advancers 1,072 to 283, and 133 issues ended unchanged.

In currency dealings, the dollar continued to weaken against the yen following the U.S. equities retreat.

The euro was traded at 117.75 yen, up from 117.44 yen late Thursday in Tokyo. Against the dollar, the euro was quoted at 1.0165, up from 1.0095 in New York overnight.


  • Dan Collins

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