TOKYO, March 16 Japanese stocks eked out small
gains in choppy trade on Thursday after the U.S. Federal Reserve
hiked U.S. interest rates, but signalled no pick-up in the pace
The Nikkei rose 0.1 percent to 19,590.14 points,
after trading in negative territory earlier in the session.
Financial stocks languished as U.S. yields fell after the
Fed raised interest rates for the second time in three months,
but did not flag any plans to accelerate the pace of monetary
tightening. Exporters were also weak after the dollar fell
against the yen.
Fast Retailing, the operator of Uniqlo clothing
chain, fell 1.9 percent after the Nikkei Business Daily reported
that its rivals were planning to expand aggressively to new
The loss contributed a hefty 27 negative points to the
On the other hand, mining shares rose after crude oil prices
extended gains from the previous session after official
government data showed U.S. stockpiles had eased from record
highs. Inpex Corp rose 1.0 percent and Japan Petroleum
Exploration Co gained 0.8 percent.
The market largely shrugged off the Bank of Japan's decision
on Thursday to keep its monetary policy steady, an announcement
The broader Topix gained 0.1 percent to 1,572.69 and
the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 added 0.1 percent to
(Reporting by Ayai Tomisawa; Editing by Randy Fabi)