RTTNews - After nine successive days of gains, the Japanese market moved in a choppy fashion on Tuesday morning with investors looking to take some profits.

The benchmark index Nikkei fell into the red after an early surge, and despite staging a few rallies from lower levels, was down by 25.78 points or 0.26% at 10,063 at the end of the morning session today. The Nikkei had ended with a sharp 1.45% or 144.1 points gain at 10,089 on Monday.

Buoyed by encouraging new home sales data from U.S., shares of automobile major Toyota Motor Corp. edged higher this morning. The stock gave up some gains due to profit taking at higher levels, but was still holding on in positive territory with a modest gain.

Suzuki Motor, Nissan Motor, Isuzu Motors and Hino Motors were also trading in positive territory with notable gains.

In the banking space, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial, Chuo Mitsui Trust Holdings, Sumitomo Trust and Banking, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial and Mizuho Trust & Banking moved up.

Steel stocks were mostly trading higher with JFE Holdings and Pacific Metals posting impressive gains. Non-ferrous metals Toyo Seikan Kaisha, Sumitomo Electric Industries, Toho Zinc, SUMCO and Fujikura were up with notable gains.

Construction, foods, chemicals and pharmaceuticals stocks exhibited a mixed trend. Machinery and electric machinery stocks were mostly trading weak.

Hitachi Construction Machinery Co. has lowered its net profit outlook to 5 billion yen for the year ending March, 73% smaller from a year earlier, down from the previous projection of a 7 billion yen profit. The stock, which plunged into the red after opening sharply higher this morning, was up in positive territory with a modest gain at the break.

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York said Monday it has named Nomura Securities International as a primary dealer, allowing it to trade Treasury securities directly with the U.S. Federal Reserve System. In Autumn 2007, the unit of Nomura Holdings Inc. voluntarily removed itself from the list as losses in its U.S. operations came to light. The Nomura Holdings stock was up by around 1.5% at the end of the morning session.

Shares of Sapporo Holdings Ltd. moved past the 600 yen mark for the first time in nearly nine months and hit year-to-date high at 648 yen after the company said it will likely book a group net loss of 700 million yen for the January-June period, down from 9.5 billion yen profit a year earlier. Despite the sharp decline, earnings were much better than the previous estimate of a 3.7 billion yen loss.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar traded in the lower 95-yen range early Tuesday in Tokyo, little changed from its late Monday quotes in New York. In early trading this morning, the dollar fetched 95.17-22 yen against Monday's close of 95.14-24 yen in New York and 95.00-03 yen in Tokyo. The yen is currently trading at 95.04 to the U.S. dollar.

Among other markets in the Asia-Pacific region, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Taiwan and Korea are trading higher. Shanghai is exhibiting weakness. Stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region had finished on the upside on Monday.

On Wall Street, stocks rallied during the final hour on Monday after trading in the red for a considerable length of time.

According to a release from the commerce department, new home sales jumped 11% to an annual rate of 384,000 in June from the revised May rate of 346,000. The rise was much more than economists had been anticipating. The month-to-month percentage change is the highest in nearly 9 years. The stronger than expected sales growth came amid a pullback in prices, with the median sales price of new houses sold in June falling 5.8% to US$206,200 from US$219,000 in the previous month. The median sales price had increased for two consecutive months.

The Dow closed up by 15.27 points or 0.2% at 9,109, the Nasdaq climbed by 1.93 points or 0.1% to 1,968 and the S&P 500 edged up by 2.92 points or 0.3% to 982.

Major European markets ended the day higher after seeing some volatility. The German DAX index gained 0.4% while the U.K.'s FTSE 100 index and the French CAC 40 index both eked out 0.2% percent gains.

Crude oil finished a choppy session mildly higher on Monday after earlier challenging US$69 per barrel. Oil received a spark from encouraging housing data that led to believe better days may be looming for energy demand. Light sweet crude oil for August delivery rose to US$68.38, up 33 cents on the session. Prices earlier touched as high as US$68.99 before hitting a low of US$67.60.

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