The FINANCIAL - Japanese Market Marginally Higher

Japanese Market Marginally Higher

Japanese Market Marginally Higher

The FINANCIAL -- The Japanese stock market is up with modest gains on December 28 as Investors went bargain hunting following the benchmark Nikkei index's five straight days of losses through December 25, according to Nasdaq.

Meanwhile, industrial production data released today showed that Japan's industrial output declined for the first time in three months.

In late-morning trades, the benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is adding 32.1 points or 0.17 percent to 18,801.19, off a high of 18,874.92 in early trades.

Sharp is rising more than 9 percent after media reports indicated that Taiwan'sHon Hai Precision Industry or Foxconn has offered to buy the struggling display maker for about 300 billion yen, or $2.5 billion.

Market heavyweight Fast Retailing is declining more than 1 percent, while SoftBank is adding almost 2 percent. Automaker Toyota is up 0.2 percent.

In the banking space, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is advancing 0.8 percent, Mizuho Financial Group is adding 0.7 percent and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is rising 1 percent.

Among the other major gainers, Oki Electric Industry is gaining more than 4 percent. Unitika is rising almost 4 percent and IHI Corp. is gaining more than 3 percent.

Meanwhile, J Front Retailing is losing more than 3 percent and Marui Group is down 2.7 percent.

On the economic front, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said in Monday's preliminary reading that industrial production in Japan was down a seasonally adjusted 1.0 percent on month in November, falling for the first time in three months. That missed forecasts for a decline of 0.5 percent following the 1.4 percent gain in October.

Also on December 28, the METI said that the total value of retail sales in Japan was down 1.0 percent on year in November. That missed forecasts for a decline of 0.1 percent following the 1.8 percent increase in October.

In the currency market, the US dollar is in the lower 120-yen range Monday, down slightly from Friday's close in Tokyo.

The U.S. and European markets were closed on Friday for the Christmas Day holiday.