Japanese stocks were flat in thin, choppy trade on Thursday as indexes gave up earlier gains due to the yen’s rising strength against the dollar, which curbed optimism over the profit outlook for exporters and other shares.
The Nikkei share average edged up 0.1 percent to 16,772.46 for its highest close in nearly a month.
Market players noted investors’ lack of conviction in the absence of strong catalysts as Japan hosts a two-day G7 leaders’ summit. Volume on the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s first section remained near mid-March lows and turnover was similarly subdued.
Shares of embattled air bag maker Takata Corp bucked the day’s weakness and soared 21 percent to the daily limit after the Nikkei business daily reported U.S. investment fund Kohlberg Kravis Roberts is interested in taking a 60 percent stake in the company.
A Takata spokeswoman declined to comment on the report of KKR’s possible investment in Takata, which potentially faces billions of dollars in costs related to a massive global recall of its air bag inflators.
The broader Topix was flat at 1,342.87 and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 ended the day flat at 12,114.06.