Japan Stocks Fall as Exporters Drop on Strong Yen, Brexit Fears

Japanese stocks fell for a third day after the yen strengthened, dampening the earnings outlook for exporters, as investors remained cautious ahead of central bank meetings this week and amid lingering concern over whether the U.K. will vote to leave the European Union.

The Topix index slumped 1.8 percent to 1,306.93 as of 9:01 a.m. in Tokyo. The Nikkei 225 Stock Average lost 1.8 percent to 16,309.22. The yen gained 0.4 percent to 106.53 per dollar, strengthening for a second day. While traders see zero chance of the Federal Reserve raising rates later this week, and uncertainty remains over whether the Bank of Japan will add to stimulus, investors are avoiding risk on concern their policy meetings could roil financial markets. The campaign for Britain to exit the E.U. took a 10 percentage-point lead in a poll published late Friday, less than two weeks before the country votes in a referendum.

Source: Bloomberg

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Shanghai stocks fall for 6th straight week on economy fears

China stocks ended slightly lower on Friday, capping a sixth straight week of losses for the Shanghai Composite Index, as industrial profit data added to fears that a recent pick-up in the economy is fizzling out.

The Shanghai Composite Index was fractionally lower at 2,821.05 points, and slipped 0.2 percent for the week.

The index has now has lost more than 8 percent since mid-April.

The blue-chip CSI300 index fell 0.1 percent, to 3,062.50, declining 0.5 percent for the week.

Many investors remained on the sidelines, worried about China’s economic health and the impact of a possible U.S. rate hike as soon as next month. Trading volume in Shanghai shrank to a near five-month low.

Profit growth at China’s industrial firms slowed in April, in line with other data for the month which suggested the economy may be losing steam again after picking up earlier in the year.

Sector performance was mixed, with IT and telecommunications shares rising but energy and healthcare stocks slipping.

Source: reuters

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