The Japanese stock market is sharply lower on Wednesday, giving up some of the gains in the previous two sessions, with the Nikkei 225 staying just above the 26,100 level, following the mixed cues overnight from Wall Street, dragged by exporters, energy and financial stocks, partially offset by gains in technology stocks.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is down 322.51 points or 1.22 percent at 26,100.96, after hitting a low of 26,051.19 earlier. Japanese stocks closed significantly higher on Tuesday.
Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is edging up 0.2 percent, while Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing is losing more than 2 percent. Among automakers, Honda is declining almost 2 percent and Toyota is losing more than 2 percent.
In the tech space, Screen Holdings is gaining more than 1 percent and Advantest is adding almost 1 percent, while Tokyo Electron is flat.
In the banking sector, Mizuho Financial is losing almost 2 percent, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is declining more than 3 percent and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is down more than 2 percent.
Among the major exporters, Sony is losing almost 2 percent and Panasonic is down almost 1 percent, while Mitsubishi Electric and Canon are declining more than 2 percent each.
Among the other major losers, Inpex and Tokyo Electric Power are plunging more than 7 percent each, while Tokyo Gas is sliding almost 7 percent. JGC Holdings, Idemitsu Kosan, Hitachi Construction Machinery, Mitsubishi Motors and IHI are declining almost 6 percent each, while Sumitomo Metal Mining, Komatsu and Kawasaki Heavy Industries are slipping more than 5 percent each. Mitsui & Co., Sumitomo and Mitsubishi are down almost 5 percent each, while ENEOS Holdings is lower by more than 4 percent.
Conversely, Sumitomo Osaka Cement is surging more than 5 percent, Eisai is adding more than 4 percent and M3 is gaining almost 4 percent, while NEXON is up almost 3 percent.
In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the lower 135 yen-range on Wednesday.
On Wall Street, stocks ended on a mixed note on Tuesday after a volatile session, as fears about a possible recession and interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve weighed on sentiment. Growth fears outweighed news that U.S. President Joe Biden may announce a rollback of some US tariffs on Chinese imports.
The major averages all fell sharply into the red early on in the session. The Dow recorded a loss of 129.44 points or 0.42 percent to settle at 30,967.82, the S&P 500 settled with a gain of 6.06 points or 0.16 percent at 3,831.39 and the Nasdaq ended higher by 194.39 points or 1.75 percent at 11,322.24.
Meanwhile, the major European markets closed sharply lower, weighed down by weak eurozone economic data. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 drifted down 2.86 percent, Germany's DAX fell 2.91 percent, and France's CAC 40 declined 2.68 percent.
Crude oil prices plunged sharply Tuesday on concerns about the outlook for energy demand following a surge in Covid cases in China, while fears about Fed tightening, a strong greenback and a possible global slowdown also weighed on oil prices. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for August plummeted $8.93 or 8.2 percent at $99.50 a barrel.