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SoftBank

SoftBank Group falls 17% after Uber plunges and WeWork worries

Market cap of Japanese giant dips below 7 trillion yen

Markets are losing confidence in Masayoshi Son's SoftBank Group, as its flagship Vision Fund continues to be hammered by shaky investments.

TOKYO -- SoftBank Group shares tumbled 17% on Thursday, marking a seven-day losing streak after exposure to Uber and WeWork weighed on forecasts for the group.

Shares breached the 3,000-yen mark for the first time since August 2016.

The fall was far steeper than the benchmark Nikkei Stock Average, which slipped 1.04% on the day.

Shingo Ide, chief equity strategist at NLI Research Institute, said the drop was mainly attributed to WeWork's ongoing troubles and Uber Technologies' steep 21.6% plunge in the U.S. on Wednesday -- the ride-hailer's largest intraday loss since it listed in May 2019.

Both companies are part of SoftBank's Vision Fund investment vehicle. Their troubles helped push group shares down by 20% at one point on the day.

Uber said it will hold a teleconference later on Thursday, while SoftBank said on Tuesday it was reviewing its plan to buy $3 billion worth of shares from WeWork, its troubled U.S. office-share.

The Japanese group's market capitalization dropped below 7 trillion yen for the first time in 3 years and 4 months.

SoftBank's fall was also affected by a negative credit rating outlook published on Tuesday by S&P Global Rating.

"The selling is coming from foreign investors who are concerned about overleveraged companies," said Tomoichiro Kubota, an analyst at Matsui Securities.

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