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Tokyo stocks fall in morning on profit-taking.

TOKYO, Feb. 1 Kyodo

Tokyo stocks fell Wednesday morning on profit-taking following their advance for the sixth straight trading day, as well as being weighed down by overnight declines in U.S. shares.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average fell 16.27 points, or 0.10 percent, in the morning, to 16,633.55. The Tokyo Stock Price Index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange declined 2.79 points, or 0.16 percent, to 1,707.98.

The Tokyo stock market got off to a weak start and the stock indexes stayed in negative territory for most of the morning session as investors opted to take profits on recent surges, brokers said.

Some technical charts suggested that Tokyo shares had risen too far and too fast, brokers said. In the past six trading days, the benchmark Nikkei rose 1,289.17 points, or 8.4 percent.

''Since the pace of the recent rises seemed too fast, the market needed to take a rest,'' said Kenichi Azuma, equity strategist at Cosmo Securities Co.

A below-forecast earnings result released Tuesday by Google Inc. of the United States also helped cool market sentiment, raising concern over possible further falls on Wall Street when it opens later in the day, brokers said.

''With Google's earnings failing to meet market expectations and the stock tumbling in after-hours trading, there was a mood that it's better to sell now if you can make profits,'' Azuma said.

The morning's worst-performing sector was information issues, with Yahoo Japan sliding 4,000 yen to 155,000 yen.

Paper, glass, warehousing and fishery-related issues were also lackluster.

However, nonferrous metal, mining, steel and insurance issues did well, limiting the market's downside.

Honda Motor gained 90 yen to 6,750 yen after saying Tuesday its group sales for the October-December period rose 15.8 percent from a year before to a record quarterly high of 2.47 trillion yen, backed by strong overseas sales.

Canon gained 110 yen to 7,190 yen. The rise came after the Intellectual Property High Court banned an importer from selling recycled ink cartridges for printers in line with a demand by Canon, the patent holder of the type of cartridge.

Softbank was the most heavily traded issue by value. It rose 50 yen to 4,000 yen.

Sanyo Electric was the morning's volume leader and gained 13 yen to 309 yen.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones 930 to 629, with 110 shares ending the morning unchanged.

Trading volume on the TSE's main section came to 1,257.61 million shares, against Tuesday morning's 1,200.93 million shares.

The TSE's Second Section index rose 0.24 points, or 0.00 percent, to 5,294.49 on a volume of 46.12 million shares. In Osaka, the near-term March Nikkei 225 index futures contract lost 20 points to 16,640.
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Publication:Japan Weekly Monitor
Geographic Code:9JAPA
Date:Feb 6, 2006
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