Nikkei edges up in thin trade; Toshiba plummets

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
Nikkei edges up in thin trade; Toshiba plummets
Credit: © Reuters.

* Banking stocks outperform

* Ono Pharmaceutical jumps

By Ayai Tomisawa

TOKYO, Dec 27 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average edged up on Tuesday morning in thin trade while Toshiba Corp plummeted on news that it was considering booking a goodwill impairment loss of several hundreds of billion yen.

The Nikkei .N225 gained 0.2 percent to 19,443.26 in midmorning trade.

Overall sentiment was steady as the dollar was up 0.1 percent at 117.230 yen JPY= after spending the previous day in a narrow 117.005-117.390 range as many major financial markets were closed for Christmas holidays.

"While foreign investors are away for the holidays, retail investors are the main players today," said Hikaru Sato, a senior technical analyst at Daiwa Securities.

Institutional investors are on the sidelines amid a lack of economic catalysts, he added.

Banking shares recovered with Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group 8306.T gaining 1.2 percent and Mizuho Financial Group 8411.T firming up 0.9 percent.

Ono Pharmaceutical Co 4528.T soared more than 5 percent after the Nikkei newspaper reported that the company plans to sell its cancer treatment drug, Opdivo, in the domestic market in the next fiscal year to treat stomach cancer.

Toshiba 6502.T tumbled as much as 16 percent after the company said it was considering booking a goodwill impairment loss of several hundreds of billion yen on a U.S. nuclear power acquisition made by its Westinghouse division. broader Topix .TOPX gained 0.2 percent to 1,541.48 and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 .JPXNK400 advanced 0.3 percent to 13,824.38.

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