Tokyo stocks lost ground for the second straight trading day on Thursday amid fears that the U.S. Federal Reserve would taper its monetary easing policy and an advanced yen.
The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average ended down 173.24 points, or 1.12 percent, from Wednesday at 15,341.82.
The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange lost 8.22 points, or 0.66 percent, at 1,242. 23.
The downside followed the overnight plunge in the U.S. shares market which weighed on a provisional budget deal that triggered market players' fear on the Fed's tapering of its monetary easing, said brokers here.
Although the budget itself is positive, giving the timing, it actually aroused speculation about an early tapering and the falls in the U.S. market, said analysts.
Meanwhile, the yen's advance also hurt investors' optimism on earnings of exporting sectors.
The U.S. dollar traded at mid-102 yen level here, falling from its over-six-month high of 103 yen earlier this week, while the euro changed hand in the mid-141 yen zone.
On Thursday, decliners were led by chemical, consumer financing and precision machinery sectors, while the real estate and rubber sectors were the only gainers.
Declining issues surpassed advancing ones 1,154 to 434 on the First Section, while 181 remained unchanged when the market closed.
Exporting companies were hit by selling, with Honda Motor falling 50 yen, or 1.2 percent, to 4,165 yen and Toyota Motor losing 50 yen, or 0.8 percent, to 6,170 yen. Toshiba and Panasonic fell more than 1 percent.
Nitto Denko nosedived 990 yen, or 19.2 percent, to 4,180 yen after the comprehensive materials maker cut its profit outlook for the current fiscal year, expecting slower demand for materials for use in liquid crystal display panels due to sluggish TV sales in China.
Nitto Denko was the day's second-most actively traded issue by value, following Softbank, which lost 100 yen, or 1.1 percent, to 8,960 yen.
On the contrary, Yamada Denki rose 12 yen or 3.4 percent to 367 yen following the home electronics retailer's announcement of steps to strengthen its real estate business.
Trading volume on the main section fell to 2,198.63 million shares from Wednesday's 2,349.48 million shares.
The turnover was about 2,091.4 billion yen (about 20.40 billion U.S. dollars).