Kyodo news summary -2-.
---------- No. of bike gang group members falls below 10,000
TOKYO - The number of motorcycle gang members slipped below 10,000 last year for the first time since the National Police Agency started collecting the data in 1975, coming to 9,064, the agency said Thursday.
Since peaking at 42,510 in 1982, the number has followed a declining path mainly because of unwillingness to submit to the hierarchies within bike gangs and their strict rules, the NPA said.
---------- N. Korea rejects 2nd round of preliminary military talks with South
BEIJING - North Korea on Thursday blamed South Korea for the collapse of colonel-level military talks the previous day and said it sees no need to hold a second round so long as the South displays a reluctance to improve inter-Korean relations.
Pyongyang's official Korean Central News Agency, monitored in Beijing, cited a communique issued by its delegation as saying the South Korean delegation refused to compromise and treated it with discourtesy.
---------- Tokai Tokyo Financial to team up with India's Religare Enterprises
TOKYO - Tokai Tokyo Financial Holdings Inc. said Thursday it has agreed to a business tie-up with India's financial services firm Religare Enterprises Ltd. to meet Japanese investor demand for Indian securities.
The Japanese holding firm, which owns Tokai Tokyo Securities Co. and other companies, also aims to collect Indian economic and business information to provide it to its customers while broadening product lineup of the two companies.
---------- Dentsu Executive Vice President Ishii to become president
TOKYO - Dentsu Inc. has decided that Executive Vice President Tadashi Ishii will succeed President Tatsuyoshi Takashima in April, company sources said Thursday.
The major advertising agency believes that it has already made significant achievements on Takashima's watch, bolstering its overseas operations and overall earnings, and that now is the time for the 67-year-old to hand over to Ishii, 59, in order to rejuvenate the company management, the sources said.
---------- Toyota vehicles to be produced in Russia's Far East: sources
VLADIVOSTOK, Russia - Mitsui & Co. is considering assembling sport utility vehicles of Toyota Motor Corp. in Russia's Far Eastern city of Vladivostok in a joint venture with Russian automaker Sollers, sources familiar with the matter said Thursday.
The SUV production would commence in around 2012 as the first production of Japanese cars in Russia's Far East, if the relevant parties can reach agreement, the sources said.
---------- Dec. core machinery orders rise but undershoot forecast
TOKYO - Japan's core private-sector machinery orders picked up for the first time in four months in December, government data showed Thursday, but came in much weaker than expected, adding to the view that more Japanese firms are shifting their bases of production abroad.
The core orders, which exclude volatile ones including orders for ships and from power houses, stood at 735.3 billion yen ($8.9 billion), the Cabinet Office said. The data is seen as a key advance indicator for corporate capital spending.
---------- Stocks trade mixed, profit-taking weighs
TOKYO - Tokyo stocks traded mixed Thursday morning as profit-taking weighed after strong gains, but a recent improvement in sentiment toward economic recovery and the corporate sector provided support.
The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average inched down 4.06 points, or 0.04 percent, from Wednesday to 10,613.77, after trimming earlier losses. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange gained 1.97 points, or 0.21 percent, to 945.99.
---------- Benchmark bond yield falls after lower U.S. yields, Japan data
TOKYO - The yield on the benchmark 10-year Japanese government bond fell Thursday morning, taking cues from lower U.S. bond yields and weaker-than-expected Japanese machinery orders.
The yield on the No. 312, 1.2 percent issue, the main barometer of long-term interest rates, ended morning interdealer trading down 0.015 percentage point from Wednesday's close to 1.315 percent.