August 23, 2018 / 8:04 AM / 10 months ago

Foreigners sold Japanese equities for third straight week on trade worries

Aug 23 (Reuters) - Foreigners sold Japanese stocks for the third consecutive week in the week ended Aug. 17, pressured by worries about the trade dispute between the United States and China, and a stronger yen.

Overseas investors sold a net 696.06 billion yen ($6.30 billion) of Japanese stocks, including cash equities and futures, data from Japanese stock exchanges showed. The outflows in the last week were the highest in seven weeks.

The Topix index fell 1.32 percent, while the Nikkei index was marginally down 0.01 percent.

Some analysts said the Topix index indicated the actual state of the Japanese market as the Nikkei was somewhat supported by buying in large-cap stocks which are heavyweight.

The financial crisis in Turkey pushed down the lira and other emerging market currencies in the last week and lifted the safe haven currencies like yen.

The yen rose 0.39 percent against the dollar last week. The yen strength tend to affect Japanese stock markets as it hurts exporters’ revenues.

The United States and China escalated their acrimonious trade war on Thursday, implementing punitive 25 percent tariffs on $16 billion worth of each other’s goods, even as mid-level officials from both sides resumed talks in Washington.

Japanese investors, on the other hand, bought 264.6 billion yen ($2.39 billion) worth of overseas equities, data from Ministry of Finance showed. It was their 21st consecutive weekly purchase. ($1 = 110.4900 yen)

Reporting by Gaurav Dogra,Patturaja Murugaboopathy; Editing by Kim Coghill

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