Bloomberg News

Japanese Stocks: Mitsui O.S.K., Olympus, Sega Sammy, Sumco, TDK

December 15, 2011

Dec. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average fell 141.76, or 1.7 percent, to 8,377.37 at the 3 p.m. close in Tokyo. The following were among the most active shares in the Japanese market today. Stock symbols are in parentheses after company names.

Shipping lines: Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd. (9104 JT) and two of its rivals fell after Bank of America Merrill Lynch trimmed their target prices and maintained “neutral” ratings, saying it expects their earnings to remain sluggish in the mid-term.

Mitsui O.S.K. sank 5.5 percent to 273 yen after Merrill cut its estimate to 310 yen from 400 yen, while Nippon Yusen K.K. (9101 JT) lost 4.6 percent to 187 yen after its target fell to 210 yen from 270 yen. Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd. (9107 JT), whose estimate was cut to 160 yen from 250 yen, fell 4.8 percent to 140 yen.

Cybozu Inc. (4776 JT), an Internet software developer, slid 4.6 percent to 22,800 yen. Operating profit fell 27 percent to 544 million yen ($7 million) in the nine months ended Oct. 31 as sales declined 23 percent, the company said in a release. Net income rose 19 percent to 336 million yen, buoyed by a gain from sale of affiliated stocks.

Kumiai Chemical Industry Co. (4996 JT), an agrochemical maker, climbed 5 percent to 295 yen. The company forecast net income will rise by 25 percent to 1.7 billion yen this fiscal year, with an 8.1 percent rise in sales.

Olympus Corp. (7733 JT), the scandal-hit camera maker, plunged 21 percent to 1,041 yen. Olympus yesterday filed its most recent earnings to avoid automatic delisting from the Tokyo Stock Exchange. It also corrected financial statements for more than five years, revealing its balance sheet had been inflated by $1.3 billion. The announcement sparked a downgrade of its debt to BBB-, the lowest investment grade, by Rating & Investment Information Inc. Olympus still faces delisting pending a review by the bourse.

Sega Sammy Holdings Inc. (6460 JT), a maker of video games and pachinko machines, rallied 6.2 percent to 1,636 yen, the biggest gain since March 16. Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities Co. boosted its investment rating to “outperform” from “neutral,” citing strong sales of the “Hokuto no Ken” pachinko game.

Sumco Corp. (3436 JT), a maker of silicon wafers for semiconductors, tumbled 8.3 percent to 578 yen, the lowest since being listed in 2005. Citigroup Inc. and SMBC Nikko Securities Inc. cut their stock price estimates to 700 yen. Credit Suisse Group AG said the earnings environment at Sumco is weak due to falling prices and slumping personal computer demand, citing government data showing silicon wafer shipments dropped 8 percent in October from a year earlier.

TDK Corp. (6762 JT), the world’s biggest maker of magnetic heads for disk drives, slipped 4.4 percent to 3,335 yen. Moody’s Japan K.K. cut the outlook for TDK’s long-term debt to “negative” from “stable,” citing weak demand and falling prices for electronics components as well as the strong yen.

--Editors: Jim Powell, Nick Gentle.

To contact the reporter on this story: Norie Kuboyama in Tokyo at nkuboyama@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Gentle at ngentle2@bloomberg.net


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