TOKYO, May 23 (Xinhua) -- The benchmark Nikkei stock index ended lower on Tuesday, snapping an eight-day winning streak, as investors opted for profits amid concerns the market might be overheating.
The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average dropped 129.05 points, or 0.42 percent, from Monday to close the day at 30,957.77.
The broader Topix index, meanwhile, lost 14.41 points, or 0.66 percent, to finish at 2,161.49.
Local brokers said that trading got off to a bright start, hitting its highest intraday level since August 1990, but gains were pared in later trade as investors moved to secure gains following the market's recent extended rally.
"The Nikkei started to look top heavy in the afternoon, which invited some profit-taking," Masahiro Ichikawa, chief market strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui DS Asset Management, was quoted as saying.
"The drop isn't based on any news in particular. The market has been on a rising streak, resulting in it being overheated, or overbought, and profit-taking is taking place," he also said.
Semiconductor-linked issues were sold for profits, with chipmaking equipment maker Tokyo Electron weighing heavily on the market dropping 2.6 percent.
Chip-testing equipment maker Advantest was another notable loser, ending the day 1.7 percent lower.
Toyota Motor Corp. reversed 4.8 percent although some losses were trimmed by Renesas Electronics, bucking the downward trend and gaining 2.9 percent, while Trend Micro closed 2.2 percent higher.
By the close of play, transportation equipment, iron and steel and air transportation-linked shares comprised those that declined the most.
The turnover on the Prime Market on the second trading day of the week came to 3,760.11 billion yen (27.17 billion U.S. dollars). ■