1 Jan 2012

Low ending for shares in Japan

9:35 am on 1 January 2012

The main share index in Japan has closed at its lowest end-of-year level since 1982.

The Nikkei 225 index finished Friday up 0.7% At 8,455.35.

As well as the earthquake and tsunami on 11 March, stocks have been hit by a weak global economy.

Shares lost a fifth of their value this year, with the majority of losses in the two days following the disaster.

But the BBC reports Nikkei is still more than 10% above the low of 7,621.92 set in October 2008. However, shares rallied strongly in the last two months of that year to finish above this year's level.