TOKYO, Dec 27 (Reuters) - Japanese shares ended lower on
Monday, with SoftBank Group leading losses, as concerns over the
impact of the Omicron COVID-19 variant offset gains in
heavyweight technology stocks.
The Nikkei share average slipped 0.37% to close at
28,676.46, while the broader Topix lost 0.45% to
Global technology investor SoftBank Group fell
2.96% on news that Credit Suisse is seeking information through
U.S. courts, which could lead to it taking legal action in
Britain against the Japanese company to recover certain funds.
"We do not have market moving events at home or abroad, and
many people are still away from the markets, it is hard to make
active bets," said Shigetoshi Kamada, general manager at the
research department at Tachibana Securities.
The volume of shares traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange's
main board was 0.78 billion, compared with the average of 1.19
billion in the past 30 days.
"Under this environment investors chose to bet on a
particular group of stocks, which were heavyweight chip-related,
and any other shares were sold for an excuse of fears for the
Omicron," Kamada added.
Technology shares advanced, with chip-related Tokyo Electron
and Advantest rising 2.09% and 0.83%,
respectively. Game maker Sony Group gained 0.67% and
medical equipment maker Terumo climbed 0.47%.
Retailers, meanwhile, took a hit as more cases of the highly
transmissible variant were found in Japan, raising concerns of
tighter curbs slowing the economic recovery from the pandemic.
Uniqlo clothing shop operator Fast Retailing was
the biggest drag on the Nikkei, falling 1.75%.
Home interior goods retailer Nitori Holdings
tumbled 6.53% and Muji-brand retail stores Ryohin Keikaku
There were 50 advancers on the Nikkei index against 169
(Reporting by Junko Fujita; Editing by Devika Syamnath)