Japanese stocks retreat on Thursday, with most other Asian markets also ending lower.
HONG KONG (MarketWatch) — Japanese stocks fell Thursday, as investors worried about disappointing corporate earnings and as they absorbed signs the U.S. Federal Reserve is sticking to its timing on an increase in interest rates.
The Fed reiterated Wednesday that it will remain patient as it decides when to start raising interest rates, implying that a midyear rate hike is still possible.
Also weighing on the markets were some disappointing corporate earnings results.
Nintendo Co. 7974, -8.66% sank 8.7%, despite reporting a net-profit gain for the April-December period, as the game-console maker cut its operating-profit outlook. Maker of construction and mining equipment Komatsu Ltd. 6301, -8.54% slid 8.5%, with its chief executive officer expecting its Chinese sales to remain weak, according to Bloomberg News.
Camera maker Canon Inc. 7751, -5.11% lost 5.1%, with analysts and reports saying its quarterly profit increase was mostly helped by a weaker yen. Skymark Airlines Inc. 9204, -25.24% plunged 25.2%, after the discount carrier filed for bankruptcy protection.
Elsewhere, Chinese stocks also headed lower, after its securities regulator announced Wednesday night that it soon would launch a second round of its crackdown on margin-trading practices.