Thursday, March 10, 2005

Tokyo Stocks Slip, Techs Sag After Data

By Mariko Katsumura
TOKYO (Reuters) - The Nikkei share average lost 0.85 percent and closed at a one-week low on Thursday as a weaker dollar and an unexpected fall in Japanese machinery orders knocked technology stocks such as Tokyo Electron Ltd.

Japan's core private-sector machinery orders, a gauge of trends in capital spending, fell 2.2 percent in January from a month earlier, worse than a median market forecast of a 2.4 percent rise and marking the second straight month of decline in the volatile series.

Analysts called the figures a bit disappointing, but many of them stuck to the view that Japan's economy is returning to growth after a mild recession in the last three quarters of 2004.

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