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Japan, Australia Stocks Mixed; Asian Markets Closed for Holiday

Markets in Japan and Australia mixed on Tuesday, as several Asian stocks are closed on Tuesday as a celebration of a public holiday.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 0.18 percent or 40.16 points to 22,508.03, compared to its previous close of 22,467.87. On the other hand, the TOPIX index closed at 1,774.20. It fell 0.17 percent or 3.05 points from its previous close at 1,777.23.

Multinational conglomerate company Sony fell 6.06 percent or 327 points at today’s trade close at 5,073. Its previous close was 5,400, and the stock loss accounted for a sizable 12 points in the Nikkei Index. Sony slipped after it issued a profit warning.

Hitachi jumped 6.08 percent or 49 points at 850, compared to its previous trade close at 802. Hitachi forecast a record-high operating profit for this fiscal year, up 4.9 percent to 750 billion yen.

On the other hand, banks underperformed. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group fell 2.7 percent or 22 points at 712, and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group slipped 1.38 percent or 63 points to close at 4,487.

Japan’s Golden Week holidays started on Saturday, April 29, and will push until Sunday, May 6. The holidays will subdue trading activity, and markets will be closed again on Thursday and Friday for national holidays.

Australian Stocks Higher

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index traded 0.54 percent or 32.50 points higher at 6,015.20, compared to its previous close at 5.982.70. Heavily weighted financial sectors gained 1.26 percent, and each major banking names gained more than 1 percent.

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) rose 2.35 or 0.63 points at 27.47. It reported a rise in first-half profits (3.49 billion AUD) that beat market expectations (3.46 billion AUD).

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia was up 1.88 percent or 1.35 points at 73.17, and the National Australia Bank added 1.73 percent or 0.50 points to close at 29.75.

The energy sector rose 0.58 percent, as oil stocks mostly gained. Santos rose 0.33 percent or 0.020 points at 6.16, Oil Search was up 0.89 percent or 0.070 points at 7.91, and Woodside Petroleum added 0.96 percent or 0.20 points at 32.42.

The Reserve Bank of Australia left its cash rate unchanged at 1.5 percent. The Australian dollar traded at $0.7539, declined from its previous week rate of $0.7600.

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