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^N225 10,296.47 -60.31
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Monday February 25, 12:25 am Eastern Time

Tokyo stocks mixed as Sony fades, package eyed

(UPDATE: Updates to late afternoon)

TOKYO, Feb 25 (Reuters) - Tokyo stocks were narrowly mixed in cautious trading by late afternoon on Monday as investors marked time ahead of the release on Wednesday of a government package aimed at tackling deflation and banks' massive bad loans.

``I'm not expecting anything new out of this package, but its existence has made it difficult to sell,'' said Nobuaki Kurisu, chief fund manager at Sumisei Global Investment Trust Management.

By 0503 GMT, the Nikkei average was down 0.12 percent or 12.92 points at 10,343.86, while the capital-weighted TOPIX index (^TOPX - news) was up 0.09 percent at 990.10.

There is speculation the anti-deflation package could include plans for an injection of public funds into troubled banks.

The Bank of Japan Policy Board is widely expected to discuss ways to help the government achieve its goal of stemming a fall in prices when it meets a day later.

As a result of these policy hopes, banks were trading on a firmer footing. Mizuho Holdings Inc , the world's largest bank by assets, was up 5.22 percent at 242,000 yen.

In contrast, Sony Corp and a handful of other major technology issues came under slight pressure.

Sony, the world's largest audio-visual electronics maker, fell 0.64 percent to 6,230 yen as investors took profits after its climb earlier in the session to a one-and-a-half month high.

Debt-strapped builder Daikyo Inc soared 12.99 percent to 87 yen after the Nihon Keizai Shimbun business daily said UFJ Bank, Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank and Asahi Bank would consider giving more than 300 billion yen in aid to help it revive.

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