Nikkei closes down as Japan buys ESM bonds

<p>Japan’s finance minister has announced the nation is buying ESM bonds.</p>

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index in Tokyo closed down this morning (January 8th) on news Japan is buying European Stability Mechanism (ESM) bonds, with the first of these purchases having already taken place today.

Japanese finance minister Taro Aso informed reporters in the capital of the auction earlier and according to Bloomberg the ESM has already sold €1.9 billion (£1.5 billion) of the three-month bills at an average yield of minus 0.0324 per cent.

Investors placed bids for €6.2 billion in the securities, the Bundesbank reported.

Mr Aso said the ESM bonds and other euro-denominated government bonds are to be considered as a key investment vehicle in the management of Japan's foreign exchange reserves.

When the Tokyo stock market closed this morning, the Nikkei 225 lost 0.8 per cent – or 90.9 points – to an index value of 10508 points.

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