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Share Prices Fall In Tokyo, Dollar Gains

February 19, 1991

TOKYO (AP) _ Share prices on the Tokyo stock market fell back slightly in unusually heavy trading today. The dollar rose against the yen.

The Nikkei Stock Average of 225 selected issues lost 63.03 points, or 0.24 percent, closing at 26,166.98. On Monday, the index gained 886.27 points, or 3.50 percent.

Volume on the first section totaled 1.5 billion shares, said Tsunehiko Wajima, an analyst with Wako Securities. It was the largest single-day turnover since volume totaled 1.6 billion shares on Nov. 29, 1989, he said.

Trading totaled 1.26 billion shares on Monday.

Traders and equity salesmen said optimism over talks between Iraq and the Soviet Union on a possible end to the Gulf War and money supply figures published Monday pushed the index up in morning trading.

At the end of the morning session, the index was up 202.50 points, but the early gains were wiped out by profit taking in the afternoon, dealers said.

″Trading turned somewhat nervous out of caution over too rapid a rise in the index,″ Wajima said. ″But the market’s underlying sentiment remains firm.″

The dollar closed at 130.55 yen, up 0.60 yen from Monday’s close of 129.95 yen. It opened at 130.35 yen, and ranged between 130.24 yen and 130.60 yen.

Some $8.01 billion changed hands in spot trading, up from Monday’s $7.04 billion.

″It’s a basically quiet market,″ said Yukio Matsunaga, a dealer with the Industrial Bank of Japan.

Matsunaga said many traders were refraining from taking major positions while waiting for Iraqi President Saddam Hussein’s response to the Soviet peace plan.

There also were uncertainties about the Soviet political situation.

The benchmark North Sea Brent crude oil for April delivery was being traded at $16.70-17.10 a barrel at mid-afternoon, about the same range as late Monday.

In bond dealings, the price of the benchmark No. 129 Japanese government bonds slipped to 100.83 points as of 5 p.m. from the previous day’s 100.92 close. Their yield rose to 6.255 percent from 6.240 percent.

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