* Nintendo most traded stock by turnover on strong Switch
* Nikkei Jasdaq rises for 19th day
By Ayai Tomisawa
TOKYO, March 8 Japan's Nikkei share average
eased slightly for the fourth consecutive day on Wednesday, as
investors took caution ahead of the U.S. jobs report due at the
end of the week.
The Nikkei dropped 0.5 percent to 19,240.95 points
in midmorning trade.
"With U.S. jobs data and the Fed policy meeting scheduled
ahead, it's hard to take large positions now," said Kazuhiro
Takahashi, an equity strategist at Daiwa Securities.
"Investors have priced in a U.S. rate hike, and they are
waiting for the big event to be over."
Following last week's remarks from Federal Reserve officials
including Fed Chair Janet Yellen, the market is expecting the
Fed will raise interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point
at is policy meeting on March 14-15.
In Wall Street overnight, pharmaceutical stocks came under
pressure after U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted he was
working on a "new system" to reduce drug prices in the industry,
without providing details.
Trump's comments also pressured Japanese pharmaceutical
stocks with Takeda Pharmaceutical Co Ltd dropping 1.0
percent, Ono Pharmaceutical Co Ltd shedding 1.4
percent, and Eisai Co Ltd declining 1.4 percent.
On the other hand, Nintendo Co Ltd rose 2.6 percent
to a near two-month high to be the most traded stock by
turnover. Shares surged after Japanese game magazine Famitsu
reported that Switch, a hybrid home console and handheld device
that Nintendo released on March 3, had sold an estimated 330,637
units in the first three days.
The broader Topix dropped 0.5 percent to 1,548.09
and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 fell 0.5 percent to
Meanwhile, buying continued to fuel small cap stocks.
The Nikkei Jasdaq index rose for the 19th straight
day. Animation content provider Broccoli Co Ltd surged
3.8 percent, while online job information provider En-Japan Inc
gained 2.1 percent.
(Editing by Randy Fabi)