The Tokyo stock exchange closed slightly lower on Wednesday. Investors processed trade data from China, which showed a mixed picture.
Imports from the world’s second-largest economy were lower than expected, while exports grew faster than expected. In Hong Kong, the stock market remained closed due to severe weather conditions in the city due to Typhoon Kompasu.
Japan’s main index, the Nikkei 225, eventually lost 0.3 percent at 28,140.28 points. Japanese chip companies such as Screen Holdings (minus 2.6 percent) were under pressure following the price losses in the US chip sector. On the other hand, J. Front Retailing added 9 percent. The Japanese department store made a profit again last quarter after two-loss quarters in a row. On the other hand, Nippon Paint fell 7 percent. The paint maker lowered its profit forecast due to higher material costs and disappointing sales to automakers, cutting production due to the global chip shortage.
The stock market indicator in Shanghai was 0.4 percent higher in the meantime. Chinese customs figures showed that the country’s imports rose by 17.6 percent in September. In August, imports increased by more than 33 percent. Economists polled by Reuters news agency had expected a 20 percent increase. Instead, exports rose by 28.1 percent, while economists expected growth of 21 percent. As a result, the Chinese trade surplus increased more than expected.
Chinese coal producers Hengyuan Coal, Tianan Coal and Huolinhe Coal, plunged around 10 percent after reports that the Chinese government is taking steps to boost coal production and push prices down. China, the world’s largest coal consumer, is facing an energy crisis caused by shortages and high prices in the coal market. In addition, coal prices rose to new record highs on Wednesday, partly due to the recent flooding in the coal-rich Shanxi province.