( dpa )- Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 Stock Average declined below 13,000 Thursday, dragged down by persistent investor anxiety about the US economy.
The Nikkei fell 104.21 points, or 0.8 per cent, to 12,995.03.
The broader Topix index of all first-section issues was also down 16.3 points, or 1.26 per cent, to 1,282.11.
The declines followed a plunge of more than 4 per cent Wednesday amid renewed fears over a possible US recession.
On currency markets at midday (0300 GMT), the dollar traded at 106.38-43 yen, up from Wednesday's 5 pm quote of 106.27-30 yen.
The euro was quoted at 1.4612-17 dollars, down from Wednesday's 5 pm quote of 1.4626-29 dollars, and at 155.42-47 yen, down from 155.46-50 yen.