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Japanese stocks tumble 1.7 percent in wake of Wall Street sell-off

Japanese stocks tumble 1.7 percent in wake of Wall Street sell-off

Japan's benchmark stock index plunged 1.7 percent Wednesday after Wall Street fell amid renewed jitters over the U.S. credit market.
The Nikkei 225 lost 274.66 points on the Tokyo Stock Exchange to finish at 16,012.83 points.
A stronger yen also prompted traders in Tokyo to sell exporters, whose overseas earnings are eroded by yen appreciation. The U.S. dollar was trading at 114.25 yen at 3 p.m. (0600 GMT) Wednesday, down from 114.56 yen late Tuesday in New York. The euro fell to US$1.3580 from US$1.3634.
Losers included blue chip auto and electronics shares. Sony Corp. fell 2.79 percent to 5,230 yen (US$45.88; euro33.58), and Toyota Motor Corp. dropped 1.95 percent to 6,530 yen (US$57.28; euro41.92).
Banks and steel shares also fell. Mizuho Financial Group Inc. dropped 0.56 percent to 710,000 yen (US$6,228.07; euro4,558.01), and Nippon Steel Corp. dropped 1.49 percent to 793 yen (US$6.96; euro5.09).
Overnight in New York, the Dow Jones industrial average sank 280.28, or 2.10 percent, to 13,041.85, its biggest drop since Aug. 9. Investors grew more uneasy about the U.S. economy and whether the U.S. Federal Reserve will take steps to prevent credit market problems from spreading further.
With trading volumes low in recent days, traders said it was unlikely the market would bounce back quickly.
"One concern is that trading volume is still low and it may be a little too early to talk about a market trend," said Mizuho Investors Securities trading information officer Terushige Shibata.
The broader Topix index, which includes all shares on the exchange's first section, fell 27.05 points, or 1.71 percent, to 1,557.55 points. The Topix lost 0.20 percent Tuesday.