Tokyo stocks closed nearly flat Friday as gains were locked in and fears of a tapering of U.S. monetary stimulus eased following the release of consumer price data for May.
The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average ended down 9.83 points, or 0.03 percent, from Thursday at 28,948.73. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange finished 2.71 points, or 0.14 percent, lower at 1,954.02.
Decliners were led by bank, real estate and machinery issues.
The foreign exchange market provided few cues for Tokyo stocks, with the U.S. dollar moving in a narrow range in the lower 109 yen zone.
At 5 p.m., the dollar fetched 109.43-44 yen compared with 109.28-38 yen in New York and 109.54-56 yen in Tokyo at 5 p.m. Thursday.
The euro was quoted at $1.2182-2184 and 133.31-35 yen against $1.2171-2181 and 133.07-17 yen in New York and $1.2160-2161 and 133.20-24 yen in Tokyo late Thursday afternoon.
The 10-year Japanese government bond's yield edged down 0.015 percentage point from Thursday's close to 0.030 percent, tracking overnight falls in the U.S. Treasury yield on expectations the Federal Reserve would not rush to taper its stimulus program.
The stock market's downside remained firm, supported by gains on Wall Street overnight on a higher-than-expected increase in U.S. consumer prices in May, which market participants took as a sign of a temporary pickup.
"The upsurge in inflation -- mostly tied to areas impacted by the pandemic -- is not expected to force any monetary policy change by the Federal Reserve," said Koichi Fujishiro, a senior economist at the Dai-ichi Life Research Institute.
The U.S. consumer price index, released Thursday, showed a rise of 5.0 percent from a year earlier, the fastest pace of increase in nearly 13 years and larger than the 4.7 percent gain projected by economists.
On the First Section, declining issues outnumbered advancers 1,363 to 709, while 121 ended unchanged.
Toshiba dropped 75 yen, or 1.6 percent, to 4,645 yen after an investigation requested by some foreign shareholders concluded Thursday that the industrial conglomerate's general shareholders' meeting last year was not conducted fairly.
A group of lawyers said in a report that the company had sought assistance from the government to block proposals from foreign investors.
Chip-related issues were mostly higher, buoyed by the overnight rise of the technology-heavy Nasdaq index.
Screen Holdings ended up 30 yen, or 0.3 percent, at 10,710 yen, Advantest gained 60 yen, or 0.6 percent, to 9,970 yen, while Tokyo Electron rose 310 yen, or 0.7 percent, to 47,880 yen.
Trading volume on the main section rose to 1,221.15 million shares from Thursday's 1,028.05 million shares.
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