Tokyo stocks were down more than one percent in opening trade on Tuesday, as investors saw few buying incentives while the dollar continued weak against the yen.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index gave up 152.34 points, or 1.07 percent, to 14,105.70 in the first 20 minutes of trading.
Sony shares fell 3.93 percent to 2,053 yen after the electronics giant said its board had unanimously decided to reject a US hedge fund's proposal to spin off part of its profitable entertainment arm.
Trading was slack on the broader market.
"The summer doldrums are upon us, with participation levels low and trading incentives -- aside from earnings-related news -- relatively few," said SMBC Nikko Securities genera manager of equities Hiroichi Nishi.
US stocks ended mostly lower Monday on fairly quiet trading during which some investors fretted about the possible pullback of the Federal Reserve's aggressive bond-buying programme.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.30 percent at 15,612.13.
The US growth outlook appeared firmer as the Institute for Supply Management's July purchasing managers index for the services sector showed a healthy jump in activity.
That raised some concerns that the Fed might taper its bond-buying programme sooner rather than later, weighing on stocks while supporting the dollar.
The dollar was 98.02 yen in early Tokyo trade Tuesday compared with 98.27 yen in New York on Monday afternoon.
The euro bought $1.3263 and 129.98 yen against $1.3259 and 130.30 yen in US trade.
-- Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this article --