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Nikkei dips on Fed, earnings caution; Asahi falls after AB InBev deal

TOKYO, July 22 (Reuters) - Japanese shares dipped on Monday on diminishing hopes of a large rate cut by the U.S. Federal Reserve and as investors took a cautious stance ahead of a Japanese earnings seasons that starts this week.

The Nikkei share average fell 0.28% to 21,407.31 while the broader Topix dropped 0.35% to 1,558.49, with growth shares underperforming with fall of 0.5%.

On Friday, U.S. stocks fell following a report that the Federal Reserve plans to cut interest rates by only a quarter-percentage point at the end of the month.

Asahi Group Holdings fell 6.3% after the beverage firm said it would buy the Australian operations of Anheuser-Busch InBev and issue up to 200 billion yen ($1.9 billion) of shares to fund it.

On the whole, trading was light as many investors looked to coming earnings for clues on the market, which has moved in a narrow range in the past few months on uncertainties over Sino-U.S. trade war.

Quarterly earnings reports by Japanese companies will be in full swing later this week, with Canon and Nidec announcing results after the market close on Wednesday. (Editing by Richard Borsuk)