TOKYO , Jan. 27 -- ( Kyodo ) _ The Nikkei stock index fell below the 15,000 threshold for the first time since mid-November in early morning trading on Monday as selling was spurred after plunges in U.S. and European shares and the yen's appreciation amid worries over a sell-off of emerging market currencies. In the first 15 minutes of trading, the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average fell 428.55 points, or 2.78 percent, from Friday to 14,963.01. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was down 35.10 points, or 2.78 percent, at 1,229.50. The Tokyo market came under selling pressure after plunges of the Argentine peso and other emerging market currencies spooked investors, sending the 30-issue Dow Jones Industrial Average to a one-month low. The yen attracted buying against the dollar and the euro as a safe-haven asset, weighing on export-oriented Japanese companies' shares.
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