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Tokyo stocks open down 0.50%

Tokyo stocks opened 0.50 percent lower on Thursday on profit-taking following recent sharp gains and as the yen strengthened slightly against the dollar following recent falls.

The Nikkei 225 index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange was down 57.43 points at 11,406.32 at the start.

Investors cashed in on the previous day's gains after Tokyo's benchmark index soared to its highest close since September 2008 on Wednesday, brokers said.

"Buy catalysts are lacking, especially with the yen retracing lost ground and overnight US markets little changed," SMBC Nikko Securities general manager of equities Hiroichi Nishi told Dow Jones Newswires.

US stocks closed fairly flat Wednesday after a choppy day of trading, with some positive earnings reports providing support.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 7.22 points, or 0.05 percent, to 13,986.52, but the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index fell 3.10, or 0.10 percent, to 3,168.48.

The yen edged up Thursday morning following its recent sharp decline.

The dollar fetched 93.46 yen in early Asian trade, compared with 93.57 yen in US trade.

The euro slipped to 126.38 yen from 126.46 yen but inched up to $1.3522 from $1.3519.