TOKYO, Jan 13 ― Tokyo shares opened lower today after surging the previous day, despite gains on Wall Street following data showing another spike in consumer prices.

The benchmark Nikkei index fell 0.37 per cent, or 107.44 points, to 28,658.22 at the open, while the broader Topix index was down 0.27 per cent, or 5.38 points, to 2,013.98.

“Although caution over tighter US monetary policy eased, the market is likely to experience sea-saw trade due to the spread of Covid-19 in Japan,” Mizuho Securities said.

But Okasan Online Securities said it was important that investors monitor surging virus cases “calmly”.

Japan recorded more than 13,000 new infections yesterday, a jump from a few hundred cases per day in recent weeks.

“The increase in cases is expected, considering the large number of people going out during the year-end and New Year holidays, and the speed of contagion in Europe and the US,” Okasan said.

The market was also weighed down by a stronger yen. The dollar fetched ¥114.65 (RM4.19) against ¥114.53  in New York but down from ¥115.32 in Tokyo yesterday.

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 0.1 per cent. The broad-based S&P 500 advanced 0.3 per cent, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index rose 0.2 per cent.

In Tokyo trading, Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing, which is scheduled to announce Q1 financial results later in the day, dropped 1.74 per cent to ¥59,250 while market heavyweight SoftBank Group tumbled 1.14 per cent to ¥5,618.

Airlines were lower with Japan Airlines losing 1.27 per cent to ¥2,166 and ANA Holdings falling 0.99 per cent to ¥2,395.

Nintendo slid 0.82 per cent to ¥53,150 while Sony gained 0.44 per cent to ¥14,585.

Toyota was up 0.48 per cent to ¥2,371 and Nissan climbed 0.66 per cent to ¥636.1. ― AFP