Tokyo stocks edge up at the close on Christmas Day

Shop clerks and workers taking part in a Christmas parade at the Marunouchi shopping district in Tokyo on Dec 22, 2017.
Shop clerks and workers taking part in a Christmas parade at the Marunouchi shopping district in Tokyo on Dec 22, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (AFP) - Tokyo stocks closed slightly higher on Monday (Dec 25) in quiet trading, with investors sidelined by the Christmas holiday.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index edged up 0.16 per cent, or 36.42 points, to end at 22,939.18, while the broader Topix index was up 0.16 per cent, or 2.85 points, at 1,831.93.

"Trading is very thin in holiday mode with a lack of foreign investors," said Toshikazu Horiuchi, a broker at IwaiCosmo Securities.

"Players are feeling a sense of achievement after the US tax cut was finally completed," he told AFP.

US President Donald Trump brought forward a bill signing originally slated for January to fulfil a promise to deliver tax cuts by Christmas.

US stocks repeatedly set records earlier in the month in anticipation of the measure, but began to sag last week as the proposal cleared the final hurdles in Washington.

In Tokyo share trading, Toyota was flat at 7,282 yen, while Nissan rose 0.67 per cent to 1,128 yen.

Panasonic gained 0.39 per cent to 1,674.5 yen, while Sony dipped 0.02 per cent to 5,191 yen.

Banks were lower, with Sumitomo Mitsui Financial dropping 1.17 per cent to 4,917 yen and Mitsubishi UFJ falling 0.72 per cent to 839.8 yen.

The yen changed hands at 113.25 yen in Asian trade, compared with 113.28 yen in New York late on Friday.

Chinese stocks ended down on Monday as the sell-off in small-caps dragged down the market, dealers said.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.50 per cent, or 16.60 points, to 3,280.46. The Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China's second exchange, fell 0.93 per cent, or 17.67 points, to 1,883.89.

"Small-caps brought down the market amid lingering year-end worries," said Li Daxiao, an analyst with Yingda Securities.

Hong Kong's stock market was closed for a public holiday along with most Asian markets.