Nikkei edges lower, autos sold on Citigroup downgrade

 * Automakers fall, cut to "sell" by Citigroup
 * Nikkei to trade between 9,500-9,800 this week -analyst
 * Tokyo Elec surges, reconstruction-related stocks higher
 By Ayai Tomisawa	
 TOKYO, April 11 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei benchmark edged
lower on Monday after Citigroup slashed its ratings on major
automakers to "sell" although buying of reconstruction-related
stocks supported the market.	
 The index has recouped about two-thirds of the ground it
lost since the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, and on Friday
finished above its closely watched 25-day moving average for the
first time since March 4.    	
 But analysts say further significant gains could be hard won
and technical charts are indicating a near-term downward trend,
analysts said.	
 "When the Nikkei nears 9,800, profit-taking could hit. It's
too early to chase the market higher," said Hiroichi Nishi,
general manager at SMBC Nikko Securities.	
  The benchmark Nikkei fell 0.3 percent or 32.01
points to 9,736.07. The broader Topix was flat at
853.10.	
 Analysts said the Nikkei benchmark is expected to trade
between 9,500-9,800 this week although first-quarter U.S.
corporate earnings might change that.	
 "If such companies as Alcoa cheer the market and provide
evidence of a U.S. economic recovery, the Nikkei may top that
range," said Yumi Nishimura, a senior market analyst at Daiwa
Securities.	
Aluminum company Alcoa Inc is scheduled to
report  first-quarter earnings on Monday, and others reporting
this week include JPMorgan Chase & Co , Bank of America
Corp and Google Inc .	
 Among automakers, Toyota Motor Corp fell 2.1
percent to 3,270 yen after it was cut to "sell" from "neutral"
and its target share price slashed to 2,440 yen from 4,140 yen,
according to the Citigroup report obtained by Reuters.   	
 "We do not think the fall in earnings and slowness of the
recovery have been fully priced in yet," analyst Noriyuki
Matsushima wrote.	
 Nissan Motor Co dropped 1.8 percent to 701 yen
after being cut to "sell" from "buy" and its target share price
was almost halved to 650 yen. Honda shed 2.1 percent to 2,908
yen after being downgraded to "sell" from "buy". Its target
share price was also nearly halved, to 2,470 yen.	
 Japan's top automakers plan to resume production at all
domestic factories in stages starting on Monday, but output
levels will be at half of original plans and depend on the
availability of parts and power.[ID:nN08212730]	
 Sharp Corp fell 1.2 percent to 768 yen after the
firm said it expects to keep production suspended at two Japan
liquid crystal display (LCD) panel factories until early May
amid unstable supplies of industrial gas. [ID:nL3E7FA0FE]	
 Shares of Tokyo Electric Power Co surged 13 percent
to 475 yen, adding to a 24 percent surge on Friday in a rally
triggered in part by Mizuho Securities reiterating its
"outperform" rating on the battered stock. [ID:nL3E7F80O5]	
 Reconstruction-related stocks climbed, with contractor
Kajima Corp gaining 2.6 percent to 233 yen and Shimizu
Corp advancing 1.4 percent to 359 yen.	
 Electronics conglomerate Toshiba Corp rose 4.2
percent to 402 yen, after analysts at Deutsche Bank and MF
Global said negative sentiment surrounding the company's nuclear
business, triggered by the crisis at the Fukushima nuclear
plant, had gone too far.	
Earnings from NAND flash memory chips used in smartphones and
tablets are expected to remain healthy, both analysts said.   	
	
 (Additional reporting by Antoni Slodkowski; Editing by Edwina
Gibbs)	
 

Nikkei edges lower, autos sold on Citigroup downgrade