TOKYO (dpa-AFX) - The Japanese stock market is sharply lower on Thursday and the safe-haven yen strengthened following the overnight sell-off on Wall Street amid concerns about a potential recession after the yield on the benchmark ten-year U.S. Treasury note dropped below the yield on the two-year note.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is losing 352.72 points or 1.71 percent to 20,302.41, after touching a low of 20,184.85 earlier. Japanese shares rose sharply on Wednesday.
The major exporters are lower on a stronger yen. Mitsubishi Electric is losing almost 3 percent, while Panasonic and Canon are declining more than 2 percent each. Sony is lower by more than 1 percent.
In the tech space, Advantest is declining more than 2 percent and Tokyo Electron is lower by almost 2 percent.
Market heavyweight SoftBank is losing almost 3 percent and Fast Retailing is down more than 2 percent. In the auto sector, Honda Motor is lower by 2 percent and Toyota Motor is declining more than 1 percent.
Among oil stocks, Japan Petroleum is down more than 2 percent and Inpex is lower by almost 3 percent after a fall in crude oil prices overnight.
Among the worst performers, Unitika is losing 5 percent, while Taiyo Yuden and JXTG Holdings are lower by more than 4 percent each.
On the economic front, Japan will see final June figures for industrial production today.
In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the upper 105 yen-range on Thursday.
On Wall Street, stocks tumbled Wednesday amid concerns about a potential recession after the yield on the benchmark ten-year note dropped below the yield on the two-year note. The inversion is widely seen as an indicator of a recession, although data from Credit Suisse shows the economic downturn typically does not occur until almost two years later.
The Dow plummeted 800.49 points or 3.1 percent to 25,479.42, the Nasdaq plummeted 242.42 points or 3 percent to 7,773.94 and the S&P 500 tumbled 85.72 points or 2.9 percent to 2,840.60.
The major European markets also showed significant moves to the downside on Wednesday. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index tumbled by 1.4 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index plunged by 2.1 percent and 2.2 percent, respectively.
Crude oil prices plummeted on Wednesday on increasing worries about the outlook for global demand and a supply glut. Crude for September delivery climbed off its worst levels but still tumbled $1.87 or 3.3 percent to $55.23 a barrel.
Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX