January 17, 2018 / 2:22 AM / a year ago

Nikkei drops; mining, oil and shipping stocks lose ground, Bitcoin shares tumble

TOKYO, Jan 17 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average dropped on Wednesday morning as mining, oil and shipping stocks lost ground, while Bitcoin-related stocks tumbled after the cryptocurrency’s value slid on worries about tighter regulations.

The Nikkei dropped 0.5 percent to 23,823.95 in midmorning trade.

The mining, oil and shipping sectors underperformed, losing their recent strength by falling 2.2 percent, 1.9 percent and 1.4 percent, respectively.

Inpex Corp slipped 2.2 percent, Showa Shell Sekiyu dropped 2.1 percent and Mitsui OSK Lines shed 1.1 percent.

Bitcoin’s slide triggered a selloff across the broader cryptocurrency market as worries about a regulatory crackdown on the market spread after reports suggested it was still possible that South Korea could ban trading in cryptocurrencies.

Japanese virtual currency trading company Remixpoint Inc stumbled 4.7 percent, point media business operator Ceres Inc nosedived 10 percent and internet services provider GMO Internet tanked 8.6 percent.

Banking shares also lost ground, with Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group declining 0.8 percent and Mizuho Financial Group shedding 1.0 percent.

The broader Topix dropped 0.2 percent to 1,890.88.

Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore

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