Tokyo: Tokyo stocks opened lower Tuesday as a pickup in the yen took the wind out of exporters like Toyota and Nissan, with the Bank of Japan's last meeting of the year in focus.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index, which broke a nine-day winning streak the previous day, slipped 0.12 per cent, or 23.76 points, to sit at 19,367.84 in early trade, as a drop in bank shares also dragged the market down.
The broader Topix index of all first-section shares was down 0.29 per cent, or 4.43 points, at 1,544.63.
Japan's central bank is scheduled to wind up its two-day meeting later in the day, although no fresh stimulus measures are expected.
"There won't be any additional easing," said Masayuki Kubota, chief strategist at Rakuten Securities.
"Rather, the BoJ is entering a stage to search for an exit from easing."
In early trade, the yen's strength offset buying sentiment led by modest gains on Wall Street on Monday, while investors continued to cash in on the recent rally.
In forex markets, the dollar weakened to 117.09 yen from 117.18 in New York late Monday, well down from levels above 118 yen seen at the end of last week.
A stronger yen hurts the profitability of Japan's major exporters, hitting demand for their shares.
Toyota fell 0.58 per cent to 7,102 yen while Nissan lost 0.51 per cent to 1,163 yen and Sony slipped 0.53 per cent at 3,363 yen. Financial shares were also off, with banking Mitsubishi UFJ falling 1.33 percent to 749.5 yen.
SoftBank ticked up 0.34 per cent to 7,849 yen after it announced $1.2 billion in funding for a US space firm. The Japanese company has made a pledge to President-elect Donald Trump to invest $50 billion in the US economy.
Nintendo rebounded more than one percent after tumbling seven percent Monday as gamers -- and investors -- were left underwhelmed by its latest mobile game, Super Mario Run....