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Company News

Japanese shares hit 1-1/2 week low on U.S. tech selloff

TOKYO, Sept 9 (Reuters) - Japanese shares dropped to a more than one-week low on Wednesday, tracking Wall Street, as risk sentiment soured after an extended selloff in U.S. heavyweight technology companies.

The benchmark Nikkei share average fell 1.57% to 22,908.97 by the midday break, while the broader Topix lost 1.60% to 1,595.00.

Both indexes hit their lowest level since Aug. 28.

All but shippers among the 33 sector sub-indexes on the Tokyo exchange fell.

Wall Street closed lower overnight as technology stocks continued to slide for a third straight session, sending the Nasdaq into correction territory.

Tokyo-listed technology stocks also fell.

Nikkei heavyweight SoftBank Group Corp’s shares were down 5.47% and are on track to post their fifth consecutive session of losses.

The conglomerate’s stock has been falling since sources told Reuters and other media late last week that it had built up massive stakes in U.S. tech firms, in addition to purchasing call options.

Other technology companies including Sony Corp and Tokyo Electron dropped around 2.5% each.

Hopes of a quick economic recovery were dampened after AstraZeneca Plc said it has paused a late-stage study of one of the leading coronavirus vaccine candidates over safety concern.

Energy-related stocks tumbled as oil prices slumped after Saudi Arabia cut its October selling prices and COVID-19 cases rebounded in several countries.

Mining led decliners on the main bourse, down 3.87%, while the oil & coal products sector fell 1.61%.

Shares of oil and gas exploration company INPEX Corp dropped 4.37% and Cosmo Energy Holdings Co fell 2.36%.

Fast-food group Colowide bucked the overall weakness to jump more than 6% after the company said it had succeeded in a hostile takeover of Ootoya. Ootoya fell 2.3%. (Reporting by Eimi Yamamitsu; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)

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