TOKYO, Jan 17 (Reuters) - Japanese government bond prices were steady to firmer on Thursday, underpinned by decent results of the Bank of Japan’s purchase of five- to 10-year bonds and as Japanese shares ran out of steam after rallies in recent weeks.
The BOJ’s buying of 430 billion yen ($3.95 billion) JGBs with five to 10 years to maturity drew limited offers from markets players, supporting market sentiment.
Also helping the market, Japanese stocks appeared to have lost momentum after their rally since late last year as investors looked to upcoming earnings.
The Nikkei average dipped slightly, hit by speculation that the BOJ may reduce its buying in funds linked to the Nikkei and allocate more money to funds linked to the broader Topix index .
Ten-year JGB futures rose 0.02 point to 152.61, while the cash 10-year JGB yield was down 0.5 basis point at zero percent.
The 20-year JGB yield was flat at 0.460 percent.
At the shorter end of the curve, the two-year JGB yield fell 1.0 basis point to minus 0.175 percent, while the five-year JGB yield fell 0.5 basis point to minus 0.160 percent.
$1 = 108.96 yen Reporting by Tokyo Markets Team; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu