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  • Writer's pictureBy The Financial District

Asian Shares Mixed As Tokyo Market Falls

Asian shares were mixed on Friday after the Bank of Japan (BOJ) adjusted its bond purchase policy but kept its negative benchmark interest rate unchanged, Elaine Kurtenbach reported for the Associated Press (AP).

Photo Insert: Markets in Japan wobbled before Friday’s BOJ announcement.

Tokyo and Sydney slipped while Hong Kong and Shanghai advanced. US futures were lower and oil prices fell.

Japan’s central bank opted to keep its benchmark interest rate at minus 0.1% but fine-tuned its bond purchases to allow greater flexibility. The Bank of Japan said that extremely high uncertainties for the economy and prices required a nimble approach than its previous policy.

It said it would offer to buy 10-year Japanese government bonds at 1% each business day, instead of the upper limit of 0.5% that was imposed under its “yield curve control program.” The aim is still to keep long-term interest rates near zero percent, it said.

Markets in Japan wobbled before Friday’s announcement. Afterward, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 dipped more than 2% but in the end closed 0.4% lower, at 32,759.23.

All the news: Business man in suit and tie smiling and reading a newspaper near the financial district.

The dollar bounced against the Japanese yen but rose to 139.58 from 139.49. Shares in Japanese banks jumped. Mizuho Financial Group gained 4.8%; Mitsubishi UFG added 5.3% and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group surged 4.3%.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 declined 0.7% to 6,877.93.

Market & economy: Market economist in suit and tie reading reports and analysing charts in the office located in the financial district.

The Shanghai Composite index jumped 1.9% to 3,276.03, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng added 1.4% to 19,920.46. The Kospi in Seoul gained 0.2% to 2,608.32. Markets in India and Thailand were closed for the holidays.

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