Nikkei slips, market seeks more clues on U.S. economy

Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:43am EST

TOKYO, Jan 16 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei average edged down
on Thursday, erasing earlier gains on profit-taking as investors
wanted to see more U.S. economic data before chasing the market
higher.
    The Nikkei ended 0.4 percent lower at 15,747.20,
after rising as high as 15,941.08 in earlier trade.
    Traders said the market was pressured by profit-taking after
Nikkei futures hit their immediate resistance level of
15,950.
    They added that investors wanted to see more U.S. economic
figures including housing data for clues on how fast the U.S.
Federal Reserve will scale back its stimulus.
    But some stocks bucked the weakness, with traders citing
long-buying by foreign investors in such stocks as Murata
Manufacturing Co and Nidec Corp, which gained
1.2 percent and 2.4 percent, respectively.
    The broader Topix ended nearly flat at 1,294.39.
    The JPX-Nikkei Index 400, a recently introduced
gauge comprised of firms with high return on equity and strong
corporate governance, was flat at 11,683.77.
A couple walks along the rough surf during sunset at Oahu's North Shore, December 26, 2013. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

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