October 23, 2018 / 2:24 AM / 23 days ago

Nikkei falls on subdued earnings, weaker global sentiment

* Nikkei down 1.87 pct, Topix sheds 1.85 pct

* Subdued start to domestic earnings season dampens sentiment

* Pullback by China shares, lingering geopolitical worries weigh

By Shinichi Saoshiro

TOKYO, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average fell on Tuesday, with all but a handful of the index constituents in the red as subdued corporate earnings and a pullback in global equities weighed on investor sentiment.

The Nikkei was down 1.87 percent at 22,192.45, handing back the previous day’s modest gains, taking some cues from an overnight decline by Wall Street.

Chinese shares, which had soared the previous session and helped lift the Nikkei, also slipped on Tuesday to push down Japanese and other Asian stocks.

“The market is quite thin and thus easily swayed in either direction -it does not need much of an incentive to slip,” said Takashi Hiroki, chief strategist at Monex Securities.

“Shares are susceptible to falling amid a steady stream of concerning geopolitical headlines. The start to the domestic earnings season has also been marked by several notable downward revisions and this is also weighing on sentiment.”

Lixil Group Corp was down 15.5 percent after the manufacturer and distributor of building materials and plumbing equipment slashed its net profit forecast for the year through March 2019 to 1.5 billion yen ($13.31 million) from 50 billion yen.

Lixil revised down its profit outlook amid a drop in demand for new housing in the domestic market. Lixil also failed to gain U.S. approval to sell its subsidiary to a Chinese firm and was unable to separate the subsidiary’s liability and losses from its financial reporting.

Hitachi Chemical Co dropped 8.3 percent after the company reported that its April-September net profit declined by 2.1 percent to 16.41 billion yen.

Kawasaki Heavy Industries was down 1.3 percent, extending its decline following a drop of more than 9 percent suffered the previous day after the industrial heavyweight slashed its forecasts for the current fiscal year.

The few gainers included CE Holdings Co, which surged 15.5 percent after the medical system information provider revised up its operating profit outlook for the year through September 2018 to 526 million yen from 400 million yen.

The broader Topix was down 1.85 percent at 1,663.39, with all 33 of its subindexes in negative territory. ($1 = 112.7300 yen) (Editing by Sam Holmes)

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