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afternoon session: On Friday, the key market gauge gained 111.44 points, according to The Japan Times. The Topix, including all first-section issues, closed up 10.03 points, or 0.63 percent, at 1,606.07, after climbing 7.95 points the previous trading day. The Nikkei 225 average advanced 124.49 points, or 0.62 percent, to finish at 20,067.75. Investors were relieved after key events, including the final round of France's parliamentary election on Sunday, were over, brokers said. Stocks maintained their firmness but their upward momentum stalled amid a lack of fresh incentives, said Yoshihiko Tabei, chief analyst at Naito Securities Co. The Nikkei average briefly climbed over 140 points before the market's topside was somewhat capped in the afternoon session. ( As reported in the news.

blog post: To promote the move in 2014, he even penned a blog post for Forbes explaining the decision, according to The Japan Times. The number of transactions the New York-based firm has made since Zero. All co-founder Roger Wu had to do was obtain a digital wallet. The biggest thing is, are people willing to pay in bitcoin Wu asked. Even as the euphoria over bitcoin reached a fever pitch last week as the price surged to almost 3,000, slow transaction times and inertia are preventing it from achieving widespread usage. The reality is that most of our customers are other businesses and other businesses don't use bitcoin. ( As reported in the news.

cedric soares: Cristiano Ronaldo, coming off a tumultuous week off the field, set up Ricardo Quaresma's opening goal for Portugal, and Javier Chicharito Hernandez hit Mexico's equalizer just before halftime, according to The Japan Times. It's not the result we wanted, we had the game almost won, said Ronaldo, who was voted the man of the match. Portugal looked set for a late win when Cedric Soares scored with a deflected shot in the 86th minute, but Hector Moreno equalized for Mexico with a header in stoppage time. But we are not worried, there are two games left, we still have chances. The result left European champion Portugal and Gold Cup winner Mexico trailing host Russia in Group A. Russia opened the tournament with a 2-0 win over New Zealand on Saturday. There is no reason to be concerned, we have to think about the next match. ( As reported in the news.

side merkel: Friday morning in bed at his home in Ludwigshafen, in western Germany, with his second wife, Maike Kohl-Richter, at his side, according to The Japan Times. Merkel, Germany's incumbent chancellor who grew up in communist East Germany before being appointed by Kohl to her first ministerial post, said he changed my own life path decisively by reuniting Germany. The mass-selling newspaper Bild reported that Kohl died at 9.15 a.m. When a new spirit began to stir in eastern Europe in the 1980s, when, starting in Poland freedom was seized, when brave people in Leipzig, East Berlin and elsewhere in East Germany began a peaceful revolution, then Helmut Kohl was the right man at the right time, said Merkel, who was wearing black. Kohl, who was chancellor between 1982 and 1998, was the country's longest-serving leader. He stood fast to the dream and aim of a united Germany even as others hesitated, she said in a televised statement from Rome. ( As reported in the news.

decision: Meeting in Luxembourg on Thursday, they reinforced their commitment to extend Greece relief if needed and offered more specifics on what this could entail, according to The Japan Times. But they stopped short of providing definitive steps, which they said would only come at the end of the bailout in mid-2018. The decision came after euro-area finance ministers sought to offer more clarity on Greece's future debt path and outline possible measures they could take to ease its burden in the future. The news sent the Athens Stock Exchange to a two-year high Friday. The goal is for Greece to go back to the markets in the coming months or year. It's a very constructive decision that will help Greece, also on the international market, to gradually get more credibility, Luxembourg Finance Minister Pierre Gramegna said after the meeting. ( As reported in the news.

news conference: On Thursday, the key market gauge retreated 51.70 points, according to The Japan Times. The Topix, including all first-section issues, finished up 7.95 points, or 0.50 percent, at 1,596.04, after losing 3.68 points the previous day. The benchmark Nikkei 225 average gained 111.44 points, or 0.56 percent, to close at 19,943.26. Investors took heart from the dollar's rise to two-week highs above 111 on the back of brisk U.S. economic indicators released on Thursday. Stocks gave up some of the gains toward the close prior to a news conference by BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda later on Friday, but maintained their firmness throughout the day. In the afternoon, the Nikkei average briefly rose over 180 points and retook 20,000 after the Bank of Japan kept its monetary policy intact, as expected, following a two-day meeting. ( As reported in the news.

shinzo abe: The current expansionary phase started in December 2012, when Shinzo Abe became prime minister for the second time, according to The Japan Times. The fourth-longest period of growth was recorded during the asset-inflated bubble economy, lasting 51 months to February 1992. The panel, headed by Rissho University Professor Hiroshi Yoshikawa, judged that the economy did not slip into recession after the consumption tax rose to 8 percent from 5 percent in April 2014. The panel monitors the peaks and troughs of past economic cycles. But the panel did not assess the period after the latest consumption hike. At its previous meeting in July 2015, the panel determined that the economy hit a trough in November 2012. ( As reported in the news.

midmorning trading: On Wednesday, the key market gauge fell 15.23 points, according to The Japan Times. The Topix index of all first-section issues ended down 3.68 points, or 0.23 percent, at 1,588.09, after shedding 1.74 points the previous day. The 225-issue Nikkei average retreated 51.70 points, or 0.26 percent, to finish at 19,831.82. Selling took the upper hand from the beginning of Thursday's trading after the dollar fell below 109 for the first time in some two months in overseas trading overnight due to dismal U.S. economic indicators. But the rally was short-lived, with the renewed selling pressure forcing the Nikkei average to give up over 120 points in midmorning trading. The market popped into positive territory in early morning trading thanks to gains in some domestic demand-oriented names. ( As reported in the news.

borrowing costs: The increase in the short-term rate by a quarter-point to a still-low range of 1 percent to 1.25 percent could lead to higher borrowing costs for consumers and businesses and slightly better returns for savers, according to The Japan Times. The Fed foresees one additional rate hike this year, unchanged from its previous forecast. The Fed also announced plans to start gradually paring its bond holdings later this year, which could cause long-term rates to rise. It gave no hint of when that might occur. Fed officials reiterated their belief that that both inflation and economic growth will pick up. The Fed chose to raise rates again despite economic weakness at the start of 2017 and a further slowdown recently in inflation, which remains persistently below the Fed's 2 percent target rate. ( As reported in the news.

dow jones: On Tuesday, the key market gauge lost 9.83 points, according to The Japan Times. The Topix index of all first-section issues finished down 1.74 points, or 0.11 percent, at 1,591.77, after losing 1.96 points the previous day. The 225-issue Nikkei average fell 15.23 points, or 0.08 percent, to close at 19,883.52. The Nikkei average retook 20,000 shortly after the opening bell on buying prompted by the Dow Jones industrial average's record closing on the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday. Stocks gradually shed gains and sank into negative territory toward the day's closing. But the Tokyo market's topside soon grew heavy, with investors increasingly taking to the sidelines to wait for the Fed announcement of a decision at the two-day Federal Open Market Committee meeting through Wednesday, brokers said. ( As reported in the news.

earthquake tsunami: The number of Japanese students who studied abroad for three months or longer also rose to 4,197, up 300 from the previous survey, according to the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, according to The Japan Times. The figure of students from abroad has recovered following the decline in fiscal 2011, after a major earthquake and tsunami hit eastern Japan on March 11, 2011, triggering nuclear meltdowns at a Fukushima power plant. The roughly biennial survey on high schools nationwide showed the number of overseas students was up 482 from fiscal 2013 to hit the highest level since the ministry began collecting comparable data in fiscal 1992. The ministry said it believes the state's promotion of educational trips to Japan and local international exchange programs have helped increase the number of foreign students. Among the students going abroad, the U.S. was the most popular destination with 1,245 students studying there, followed by New Zealand with 833, Canada with 791, Australia with 515 and Britain with 131. By country and region, students from China accounted for the largest group of 873, followed by the United States at 173, Thailand at 134, Germany at 131, Australia at 106 and South Korea at 81. ( As reported in the news.

louvre accord: During this period, there was the 1985 Plaza Accord, according to The Japan Times. In the 18 months between its conclusion and the 1987 Louvre Accord, the dollar's exchange rate to the yen and the deutschmark dropped by as much as 50 percent. The two countries were engaged in fierce bargaining over a wide range of products home electronics, automobiles, machine tools, precision machinery, supercomputers, tobacco, beef, oranges and rice. But even that could not reduce the U.S. trade deficit with Japan. This agreement amended in 1991 promised to ultimately allocate 20 percent of Japan's chip market to U.S.-made products. The negotiations leading up to the Japan-U.S. Semiconductor Agreement began in 1985. ( As reported in the news.

nikkei: On Monday, the Nikkei shed 104.68 points, according to The Japan Times. On the other hand, the Topix, which covers all first-section issues, finished 1.96 points, or 0.12 percent, higher at 1,593.51 after falling 0.11 point Monday. The key market gauge lost 9.83 points, or 0.05 percent, to end at 19,898.75. Stocks moved in a narrow range as investors retreated to the sidelines to see the outcome of the two-day Federal Open Market Committee meeting through Wednesday. But the market's downside was limited thanks to some bargain-hunting on the back of brisk corporate earnings in Japan, with the Nikkei briefly popping up into positive territory, according to brokers. Some heavyweight Nikkei components met with selling, reflecting sluggish U.S. equities and the yen's rise against the dollar, brokers said. ( As reported in the news.

heavyweight components: On Friday, the key market gauge rose 104.00 points, according to The Japan Times. The Topix, including all first-section issues, ended down 0.11 point, or 0.01 percent, at 1,591.55, after climbing 1.25 points the previous trading day. The Nikkei 225 average shed 104.68 points, or 0.52 percent, to close at 19,908.58. The Nikkei average briefly fell over 170 points, led by weakness of its heavyweight components, after the tech-heavy U.S. Nasdaq composite index tumbled on Friday. The country's seasonally adjusted core machinery orders, closely watched as a leading indicator of corporate capital spending, fell 3.1 percent from the previous month, against the median estimate of a 1.2 percent decline by 20 economic research institutes surveyed by Jiji. Investor sentiment was also damped by weaker-than-expected Japanese machinery order data for April, released by the Cabinet Office just before the opening bell, brokers said. ( As reported in the news.

ally modem: Such a share would give Macron who founded his party just a year ago one of the biggest parliamentary majorities seen in the modern French state, according to The Japan Times. France is back, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe declared triumphantly. Projections showed Macron widening his centrist revolution, with his Republic on the Move party and its ally MoDem tipped to win between 400 and 445 seats in the 577-member National Assembly in next Sunday's second round. Government spokesman Christophe Castaner said the 49 percent turnout the lowest for six decades in such a vote was a failure of this election, acknowledging that the Macron team would need to reach out to those who stayed away. The stakes of the second round are clear, said the current mayor of Bordeaux, calling for Republican voters to turn out in force next Sunday. But former Prime Minister Alain Juppe of the right-wing Republicans said the low turnout was a sign of deep malaise in the electorate, and that a clean sweep by Macron would be bad for democracy. ( As reported in the news.

country: The Asahi said Malaysian authorities believe he may have been paid for information, and there was no record of any such withdrawal from banks in the country, according to The Japan Times. The eldest son of late leader Kim Jong Il was killed at the airport by two women who swiped VX nerve agent on his face, according to Malaysian authorities. Kim Jong Nam is believed to have met the U.S. citizen for two hours at a hotel in Malaysia and picked up the money while in the country, the report said, citing unnamed officials from the country's investigation authorities. South Korean government officials have speculated that Kim Jong Un was behind the murder of his half brother, a critic of his leadership who had lived outside the country for years. Kim Jong Nam held a diplomatic passport so his luggage wasn't subject to thorough searches when entering and leaving the country, the report said. Malaysian authorities found four bundles of 100 bills tied together in stacks of 300 mostly new notes in his bag, the paper said. ( As reported in the news.

branch manager: While Nomura hasn't uncovered evidence that employees broke insider trading rules, the firm concluded it violated a law governing the treatment of corporate information, they said, according to The Japan Times. Wash House shares jumped 80 percent from early February through March 10, when the company disclosed the split after the market close. An internal investigation found that a former branch manager in Kyushu mishandled private information that Wash House was considering a stock split, the people said. The stock surged as much as 15 percent the trading day after the announcement. Nomura started investigating the incident in April, combing through phone records to gauge how the information was handled, said the people. Nomura arranged Wash House's November initial public offering, a deal the former branch manager was involved in, according to the people. ( As reported in the news.

market gauge: On Thursday, the key market gauge lost 75.36 points, according to The Japan Times. The Topix, including all first-section issues, finished up 1.25 points, or 0.08 percent, at 1,591.66, after falling 6.68 points the previous day. The Nikkei 225 average rose 104.00 points, or 0.52 percent, to end at 20,013.26. The Nikkei average opened higher, reflecting an overnight rise in Nikkei futures on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Investors viewed the testimony as having no major negative impact on the Trump administration, brokers said. Tokyo stocks took heart as U.S. equities advanced overnight, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite index closing at a record high, following congressional testimony on Thursday by former Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey over Russia-linked allegations surrounding U.S. President Donald Trump. ( As reported in the news.

product ratio: Ballooning social security costs have made it imperative to rein in spending as the graying of its population picks up pace, according to The Japan Times. One key step on the agenda is to make preschool education free, although questions remain over how to fund such a policy. Japan will maintain its pledge to achieve a surplus in the primary balance by fiscal 2020, while the government's annual economic policy blueprint said that another indicator used to gauge fiscal health the debt to gross domestic product ratio is also important. The blueprint only states that a decision should be reached by the end of the year. The debt-to-GDP ratio is affected by economic growth and long-term interest rates. With a public debt twice the size of its GDP, Japan's fiscal health is already the worst of the major economies. ( As reported in the news.

japan-eu negotiations: A senior EU official said he was confident that Japanese and EU leaders will have an agreement in principle, according to The Japan Times. In Japan-EU negotiations, which started in 2013 and are now in their final stage, one of the remaining issues is the handling of tariffs on agricultural items, including dairy products. The meeting of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council President Donald Tusk is expected to be held on July 6, just before a summit of the Group of 20 advanced and emerging economies on July 7-8 in Germany, the sources said Wednesday. Apparently referring to U.S. President Donald Trump's negative stance on multilateral collaboration, the EU official said, We have to prevent America from going into the direction of isolationism and protectionism. The official said Japan and the EU are expected to delay discussion of such contentious issues as investment disputes and data transfers until after a broad agreement is reached. I don't think dairy products will be an issue that cannot be solved, the official added. ( As reported in the news.

product data: On Wednesday, the key market gauge rose 4.72 points, according to The Japan Times. The Topix index of all first-section issues ended down 6.68 points, or 0.42 percent, at 1,590.41, after retreating 0.65 point the previous day. The 225-issue Nikkei average lost 75.36 points, or 0.38 percent, to finish at 19,909.26. Stocks got off to a firmer start, reflecting an overnight rebound in U.S. equities. The dollar's rise to around 109.80 also helped lift the market, brokers said. Despite news on missile launches by North Korea early Thursday and a downward revision in Japan's gross domestic product data for January-March, released just before the opening bell, the market's downside was relatively solid in the morning session. ( As reported in the news.

show improvement: But Toshiba faces three risks that could overturn this premise Failure to submit annual financial reports by set deadlines, according to The Japan Times. Failure to eliminate negative net worth. The current reconstruction plan for Toshiba, which shoulders a massive financial burden tied to its U.S. nuclear unit Westinghouse Electric, is based on a premise that it can keep itself listed. Failure to show improvement of internal management in an ongoing TSE probe. So, if it's delisted, that's going to largely affect the turnaround plan Atsushi Osanai, a professor at Waseda Business School, said in an email. It will be unavoidable for Toshiba to be downgraded to the second section of the TSE. Losing the brand as a first-section company will make it harder to raise money. ( As reported in the news.

dow jones: On Tuesday, the key market shed 190.92 points, according to The Japan Times. The Topix index of all first-section issues closed up 0.65 point, or 0.04 percent, at 1,597.09, after falling 13.53 points the previous day. The 225-issue Nikkei average gained 4.72 points, or 0.02 percent, to close at 19,984.62. In the morning session, selling outpaced buying after the Dow Jones industrial average lost further ground in New York on Tuesday and the dollar temporarily retreated below 109.50. But stocks resisted further falls thanks to buying on dips, with the key market gauges popping up into positive territory in the afternoon. Led by losses in export-oriented issues, the Nikkei average briefly fell more than 70 points in early trading. ( As reported in the news.

japanese company: He declined to elaborate on specific targets and said the company doesn't have plans for an initial public offering because it has plenty of funding from investors, according to The Japan Times. Grab's funding has been helped by a strong relationship with Soft Bank that has blossomed since Tan first met with CEO Masayoshi Son at the billionaire's Tokyo office in 2014. The five-year-old startup has built a team for mergers and acquisitions led by President Ming Maa, with a pipeline of deals under review, CEO Anthony Tan said in an interview Tuesday. Tan said he listened to Son's advice to take his money, which was agreed upon with a handshake, and the Japanese company has backed every funding round since. With those two, you probably don't see a need to go IPO any time soon. The No. 1 priority is how you optimize with the capital you have, and then if there is a lot of capital that can work on your terms, Tan said. ( As reported in the news.

record lending: Booming construction of hotels, office buildings, shopping centers and apartments, financed by record lending for real estate by banks, has driven the gains, according to The Japan Times. Now some property investors surveying the market are anticipating price corrections. In Osaka, they are up by nearly half. Satoshi Horino, president of Mori Trust Asset Management, said he is hearing stories about appraisers calculating returns based not just on purchase price and income, but by adding further price gains, a bold assumption in a country afflicted for years by price declines. It shows land prices have come to a pretty good level, Horino said. He sees this as a contrarian indicator, another sign a reversal is coming. ( As reported in the news.

islamic state: The military said that over the past 24 hours it had taken several buildings that had been defended by snipers, according to The Japan Times. In one house they found a vault loaded with neat stacks of money worth 52.2 million pesos 1.06 million and checks made out for cash worth 27 million pesos 550,000 . The recovery of those millions of cash indicates that they are running because the government troops are pressing in and focusing on destroying them, Marines Operations Officer Rowan Rimas told a news conference in the town as helicopters on machine-gun runs buzzed overhead. Fighters linked to Islamic State have been cornered in a built-up sliver of the southern lakeside town after two weeks of intense combat. Black smoke poured from an area near one of the town's mosques and the lake after bombings by OV-10 attack aircraft and artillery fire from the ground. Officials said that, among the several hundred militants who seized the town on May 23, there were about 40 foreigners from neighboring Indonesia and Malaysia but also from India, Saudi Arabia, Morocco and Chechnya. The battle for Marawi has raised concerns that the ultra-radical Islamic State, on a back foot in Syria and Iraq, is building a regional base on the Philippine island of Mindanao. ( As reported in the news.

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financializer news

A weblog highlighting financial topics making news in the international media.