Tokyo stocks opened 0.28 percent lower on Thursday as the yen’s fall against the dollar took a breather.

The Nikkei 225 index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange was down 49.39 points at 17,804.84 at the start.

Trading is expected to be thin due to the Christmas holiday.

In New York the Dow Jones Industrial Average edged to a fresh record in a holiday-shortened session Wednesday, one day after topping 18,000 points for the first time ever, closing up 0.03 percent at 18,030.21.

The dollar was at 120.43 yen early Thursday, compared with 120.44 yen in New York Wednesday afternoon.

The euro bought $1.2190 and 146.74 yen against $1.2202 and 146.97 yen in US trade.

Bucking the overall downtrend in Tokyo, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group gained 1.0 percent to 4,402.5 yen in the first few minutes of trade.

The rise came after news reports that the group’s core banking unit would announce as early as Thursday a deal with Citigroup to purchase the New York-based company’s retail business in Japan.

Source : AFP