TOKYO: Tokyo stocks closed down 0.14 percent Wednesday on profit-taking after surging the previous day.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index, which climbed 1.95 percent Tuesday, slipped 19.68 points to 14,405.76, while the Topix index of all first-section shares was up 0.41 percent, or 4.80 points, at 1,183.15.
"There is a dearth of buying incentives and investor attention has shifted to company earnings," said Tokai Tokyo Research Centre in a report.
A slightly stronger yen also took some air out of the market, denting exporters.
The dollar slipped to 102.14 yen in Tokyo afternoon trade from 102.26 yen in New York on Tuesday.
Tokai Tokyo noted many companies have conservative earnings projections but are still hiking dividend payouts or announcing plans to buy back their own shares.
"This shows corporate sentiment is strong. More companies are likely to raise earnings outlooks and move for mergers and acquisitions," it said.
Book publisher Kadokawa Corp. surged 10.00 percent to 3,465 yen.
The jump followed a report in the Nikkei business daily that said Kadokawa and Internet company Dwango were planning to merge in a bid to combine Kadokawa's popular content -- including print publications, movies and games -- with Dwango's online distribution network.
Dwango shares soared 9.04 percent to 2,798 yen.
After the market close, the two companies announced plans to integrate their operations under a holding company.
Sony closed up 1.06 percent at 1,805 yen just before the struggling electronics giant announced it lost $1.26 billion in the fiscal year to March, in line with earlier guidance.
On Tuesday in New York, the Dow and S&P 500 extended Monday's gains despite weaker-than-expected US retail sales data.
The Dow added 0.12 percent and the S&P 500 edged up 0.04 percent, both at new records, but the Nasdaq dipped 0.33 percent after surging 1.77 percent Monday. (AFP)