TOKYO, Nov 17 (Reuters) - Japanese shares reversed early
gains on Wednesday as concerns over rising costs and a weaker
yen outweighed gains made by technology heavyweights after a
strong finish on Wall Street.
The Nikkei share average fell 0.4% to 29,679.68 by
0201 GMT, while the broader Topix lost 0.55% to
2,039.51. Earlier in the session, the Nikkei had gained 0.3% and
the Topix had risen 0.2%.
Overnight, all the three major indexes on Wall Street closed
higher on the back of upbeat retail sales data.
"The yen's weakness against the dollar is good for some
companies but also a negative factor for others. Now, investors
are focusing on the latter, especially because materials costs
are rising," said Yutaka Miura, a senior technical analyst at
"But declines in Japanese shares are limited thanks to the
solid performance of the U.S. market."
The dollar rose to a 16-month high overnight after data
showed U.S. consumers looked past rising prices and drove retail
sales higher than expected last month.
Staffing agency Recruit Holdings dragged both the
Nikkei and the Topix the most by falling 5.15%, while air
conditioning maker Daikin Industries lost 1.96% and
Uniqlo clothing chain operator Fast Retailing slid 1%.
Technology heavyweights tracked the Nasdaq higher, with
Tokyo Electron rising 2.46%, SoftBank Group
edging up 0.6% and Advantest adding 2.15%.
Oil refiner Idemitsu Kosan advanced 1.48% after the
industry ministry said it was considering a measure to mitigate
a sharp rise in gasoline prices by providing oil refiners with
subsidies to allow them to cap wholesale prices.
(Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)