Around the World's Markets: Tokyo

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The Independent Online
THE NIKKEI 225 index closed more than 3 per cent down at 15,717.9 amid concern that the benchmark index's recent rise had been excessive.

Traders said Sony and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi bore the brunt of the profit taking, which intensified towards the close. The heavyweights both fell over 4 per cent.

Buying by foreign investors was the driving force behind the recent rally in the Nikkei average, spurred by hopes Japanese companies are taking long-awaited restructuring steps to steer themselves and the economy back to recovery.