Tokyo stocks have fallen 1.
69 per cent following a heavy sell-off on Wall Street, while the yen strengthened against the US dollar, denting exporter shares.
The benchmark Nikkei-225 index on Monday lost 254.92 points to finish at 14,808.85, while the Topix index of all first-section issues fell 1.57 per cent, or 19.05 points, to 1,196.84.
Daiichi Sankyo’s shares bucked the downward trend, jumping 3.30 per cent to Y1,813 as investors cheered news that the Japanese drugmaker was selling its controlling stake in troubled Indian subsidiary Ranbaxy to Sun Pharma as part of a wider $US4.0 billion ($A4.32 billion) deal.
The deal ends Ranbaxy’s ill-fated six-year control by the Japanese company.
“It’s about expectations that the mess so far will be sorted out,” said Mitsushige Akino, chief fund manager at Ichiyoshi Investment Management.
The US, one of Ranbaxy’s biggest markets, has slapped import bans on its plants for failing to meet “good manufacturing practices”.
Tokyo investors were also awaiting the outcome of the Bank of Japan’s policy meeting, set to wrap up om Tuesday, after the latest US jobs report signalled the Fed was unlikely to speed up tapering of its stimulus drive.
“Japanese stocks are likely to struggle at low levels,” said Yoshihiro Okumura, general manager of research at Chibagin Asset Management, pointing to a slow recovery in the US employment market.
The US Labor Department on Friday said jobs growth plodded along at a solid, but unspectacular pace in March as the economy appeared to be emerging from one of the coldest winters in recent memory.
The world’s largest economy added 192,000 jobs in March – a shade below analysts’ average estimate of 195,000 net new jobs.
The US dollar fell after the jobs report to Y103.26 in New York on Friday, well below the Y103.88 earlier in the day in Tokyo. On Monday, it bought Y103.12.
A stronger yen is bad for Japanese exporters’ profitability.
In share trading, Panasonic tumbled 4.68 per cent to Y1,162 and microchip-equipment maker Tokyo Electron fell 2.60 per cent to Y6,454.
Honda Motor lost 2.80 per cent to Y3,571, while Sony slipped 0.30 per cent to Y1,988.
On Wall Street on Friday, the three main indexes tumbled after notching up strong gains through the week.
The Nasdaq dropped 2.60 per cent, while the Dow sank 0.96 per cent and the S&P 500, which saw two record closes in the week, lost 1.25 per cent.