Financials Bolster Nikkei; Stocks Going Ex-Dividend

by: Steven Towns

Japanese bank stocks are grabbing more headlines these days as they continue to scavenge around wounded U.S. i-banks. Nomura (8604) (NYSE:NMR) added some more Lehman (LEH) human capital (in Europe/ME after snagging its Asian ops) and Sumitomo Mitsui FG (8316) (OTC:SMFJY) is said to be considering making an investment in Goldman (NYSE:GS). Investors responded particularly favorably to Nomura’s efforts to become global-class, pushing the stock up 15% to ¥1,505 over the last two sessions. No doubt this is a great opportunity, but the challenge will be achieving synergies and profit accretion (Update: see FT commentary in How to say ‘no’ – er, ‘yes’ - in Japanese and Nomura creates $1bn pool for Lehman staff). The Nikkei managed a 0.2% gain after being down nearly 2% intraday. TOPIX ended fractionally lower.

In light of Japanese stocks going ex-dividend (interim) tomorrow, below is a ranking of Japanese stocks with ADRs based on ordinary share dividend yield (above 2.5%).* The Japanese benchmark 10-year JGB was last at 1.49%.

    Nissan (7201) (OTCPK:NSANY) — 4.98%
    Makita (6586) (NASDAQ:MKTAY) — 4.05%
    NTT DoCoMo (9437) (NYSE:DCM) — 2.93%
    Toyota (7203) (NYSE:TM) — 2.91%
    Mitsui (8031) (OTCPK:MITSY) — 2.85%
    Canon (7751) (NYSE:CAJ) — 2.61%
    Honda (7267) (NYSE:HMC) — 2.51%

*Dividend yields applicable to ordinary shares and based on Sept. 24, 2008 market close in Japan. Source: Yahoo! Finance Japan.

Disclosure: No position in any stocks mentioned.