Asian markets: Automakers lose, banks gain


In Tokyo Friday the Nikkei dropped 0.7 percent to close at 10,444. Automakers were among the worst-performing stocks, with Isuzu Motors falling 3.4 percent and Mazda Motor Corp. dropping 2.5 percent. Honda Motor Co. Ltd. slipped 2.1 percent and its chief rival, Toyota Motor Corp., lost 1.8 percent.

Japanese steelmakers also hit the skids in reaction to a recent announcement that the country's incoming government plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions. This will undoubtedly raise production costs for the industry. Nippon Steel Corp., the world's second-largest producer, fell 2.2 percent and Daido Steel Co. lost 2.7 percent.