Nikkei set to fall as mood sours on euro zone uncertainty

Thu Feb 7, 2013 6:24pm EST

TOKYO, Feb 8 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average is set
to extend its losses to a second day as investor sentiment was
dented by uncertainty over the euro zone economy triggered by
gloomy comments from the ECB president on Europe's outlook.
    Market players said the Nikkei was likely to trade between
11,250 to 11,400 on Friday after ending down 0.9 percent at
11,357.07 on Thursday, retreating from a 33-month high of
11,498.42 struck on Wednesday.
    But the Nikkei has been up 1.5 percent this week so far,
which could still mark its 13th straight week of gains, its
longest winning streak in 54 years.
    Analysts said that investors may stay on the sidelines on
Friday partly because the yen's slide has paused, while some
investors are reluctant to take big positions before the
three-day weekend. Markets are closed on Monday in Japan for a
national holiday.
    They added that the mood was soured when European Central
Bank President Mario Draghi said while economic activity in the
euro area should recover gradually in 2013, there were more
negative risks than positive ones. 
 
    "The market is prone to profit-taking as there needs to be
more positive catalysts to rise above the recent high," said
Hiroichi Nishi, an assistant general manager at SMBC Nikko
Securities. "But the massive trading volume posted yesterday
suggests that the Japanese market is still in the spotlight
where both foreign investors and retail investors are willing to
invest."
    On the Tokyo Stock Exchange's main board, 5.14 billion
shares changed hands on Thursday, its second highest on 
the record.
    The dollar last traded at 93.70 yen, retreating from
94.06 on Wednesday, the highest since May 2010.
    Nikkei futures in Chicago closed at 11,330, down
from the close in Osaka of 11,390.
> Wall Street ends lower on renewed euro zone fears        
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risk 
> Bonds edge up as euro slips, stocks fall                
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    STOCKS TO WATCH
    
    -- Sony Corp 
    Sony stuck with its full-year profit forecast as a weaker
yen and asset sales underpinned earnings, offsetting weaker
demand for its televisions, game consoles and other devices.
 

    -- Toyota Motor Corp 
    Toyota unveiled a redesigned Tundra pickup truck on Thursday
with a back-up camera, easier-to-use controls and other features
designed to take advantage of the lucrative U.S. truck market's
anticipated growth. 
    
    -- Fujitsu Ltd 
    Fujitsu expects to post an extraordinary loss of 170 billion
yen ($1.8 billion) this business year due to the one-time costs
of reorganising its microchip business and writing down the
value of its European IT services arm.