Tokyo stocks plunged 6 percent Thursday, with the key Nikkei index closing below the 9,000 line for the first time in about a week, as worries about the U.S. economy renewed after brief optimism following Barack Obama's historic victory in the U.S. presidential election.
The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average lost 622.10 points, or 6.53 percent, from Wednesday to 8,899.14. The last time the Nikkei closed at the 8,000 level was Friday.
A man walks past a stock quotation board outside a brokerage in Tokyo November 6, 2008. Japan's Nikkei average slid 6.5 percent on Thursday to its biggest one-day loss in nearly two weeks, with Toyota Motor Corp tumbling on earnings fears and other exporters hit by a stronger yen amid jitters over the global economy.(Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was down 57.61 points, or 5.96 percent, to 909.30.
Shares fell across the board, led by transport equipment, oil and coal product, and mining issues.
Tokyo stocks' steep fall Thursday came after they advanced for two straight trading days, with the Nikkei gaining more than 400 points to mark a three-week closing high Wednesday as investors bought equities in anticipation of Obama's victory in the U.S. presidential election.
Affected by the overnight plunge in U.S. stocks and a stronger yen versus the U.S. dollar Thursday, Japanese export-oriented auto and high-tech shares are among the top decliners.
Leading automaker Toyota Motor, the most heavily traded issue in value terms, which fell 440 yen, or over 10 percent, to 3,810 yen. Canon, a maker of digital cameras and printers, fell by its daily limit of 500 yen, or nearly 13 percent, to 3,470 yen.
Toyota Motor Corp Executive Vice President Mitsuo Kinoshita speaks at a news conference in Tokyo November 6, 2008. Toyota Motor Corp, the world's No.1 automaker, warned its annual profits will plunge to a 9-year low, as other carmakers sought state help to survive a financial crisis that is crippling demand and squeezing credit.(Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
Recent gainers such as banking shares plunged. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, the day's volume leader, shed 48 yen, or nearly 7percent, to 650 yen.
On the First Section, declining issues outnumbered advancing ones 1,456 to 215, with 42 others remaining unchanged.
Trading volume on the main section came to 2,376.34 million shares, down from Wednesday's 2,865.91 million.
The TSE's Second Section index was down 38.01 points, or 1.86 percent, to 2,009.30 on a volume of 39.88 million shares. On the Osaka Securities Exchange, the near-term December Nikkei 225 index futures contract was down 720 points to 8,800.