Nikkei drops on mixed day for Asian markets

<p>Asian markets such as the Shanghai Composite index were up today.</p>

A mixed day of trading for Asian markets today (February 26th) saw the Nikkei fall back from a four-week high as investors resorted to profit-taking on fears over the volatility of the index.

The Shanghai Composite index was up by 0.14 per cent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng index rose by 0.26 per cent, but the Nikkei ended the day down 0.34 per cent compared to the start.

Panasonic Corp helped to support the Nikkei during trading today, with the stock rising by 5.4 per cent after it was announced that the firm is in talks with Tesla Motors to build a new car battery plant in the US.

Other major movers on the main Asian markets included the ChiNext index in China, which fell by 1.8 per cent, while Huayi Brothers Media Corp was down by 6.7 per cent.

Tuesday had been a bad day for stocks in the US, reports, with the Nasdaq, the Dow Jones and the S&P index all ending the session lower than they started at. The Nasdaq fell 0.13 per cent, while the Dow Jones was 0.17 per cent lower and the S&P slipped 0.13 per cent.


Concerns over growth prospects in Asia have dented the major markets in the last few weeks and the Nikkei has been particularly volatile this week, when it has swung wildly from reaching new three-week and four-week highs to recording considerably daily losses.

Investors are concerned over the future of the market, with speculation it may have reached a peak during the course of 2014 after it outperformed major global index rivals such as the Dow Jones and the FTSE 100 in London.

A new report on home sales in the US is expected to be released later today, which will give an indication of the strength of the country's economic recovery. In turn, this will have a knock-on impact on the Asian markets, as well as stocks all over the world.

Monday's trading saw the Nikkei rise to a new three-week high before losing ground later in the session to end it 0.2 per cent down for the day.

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