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Japanese stocks plunge, falling below 10,000 after quake

Posted by on March 14, 2011 0 Comment

Tokyo, March 14 (DPA) Japanese shares plummeted in Monday morning trading, falling below 10,000 after a magnitude-9 earthquake and tsunami hit northeastern Japan last week.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Stock Average lost 464.88 points, or 4.53 percent, to trade at 9,789.55 while the broader Topix index was down 53.38 points, or 5.85 percent, at 861.93.

Tokyo stocks opened sharply lower, the Nikkei falling as low as 5.8 percent and the Topix down 7.4 percent.

The Japanese central bank is to inject seven trillion yen ($86 billion) into short-term money markets to help stabilize the financial system after Friday’s quake and tsunami, news reports said.

The quake was the largest ever recorded in Japan and one of the largest ever measured in the world.

On currency markets at 11.20 a.m. (0220 GMT), the dollar traded at 82.17-20 yen, down from Friday’s 5 p.m. quote of 82.78-81 yen.

The euro traded at $1.3930-$3932, up from $1.3899-$3909 Friday, and at 114.52-56 yen, up from 114.32-36 yen. Atsushi Saito, president of the Tokyo Stock Exchange Group Inc, pledged that the nation’s key equities market would remain open after the deadly quake.

“Considering that stocks are frequently being traded across borders, it is our responsibility to offer as many trading opportunities as possible, so the mother market of Japanese stocks can form appropriate stock prices reflecting supply and demand of many investors,” he said.

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