Nonresident net purchases of Japanese stocks totaled 1.49 trillion yen in March, topping the 1 trillion yen mark for the first time in two months, the Finance Ministry said Wednesday.

The March figure raised the net nonresident purchase of Japanese shares to 13.31 trillion yen in fiscal 2005, the ministry said.

It is close to the 14 trillion yen recorded in fiscal 2003, but the statistical bases differ slightly between the two years.

The data were evidence that the brisk performance of the Japanese stock market in fiscal 2005 was backed by active buying by nonresidents.

In March, nonresident investors bought 22.72 trillion yen worth of Japanese shares and sold 21.24 trillion yen worth.

They bought 11.94 trillion yen of medium- and long-term Japanese bonds and sold 11.82 trillion yen of them, resulting in net purchases of 117.1 billion yen worth.

Japanese investors posted 17.7 billion yen worth of net purchases of foreign stocks, selling 1.77 trillion yen worth and buying 1.79 trillion yen worth.

Their net sales of medium- and long-term foreign bonds totaled 2.33 trillion yen as they sold 10.43 trillion yen worth and acquired 8.11 trillion yen worth.

All this translated into a net capital inflow of 3.91 trillion yen to Japan in March in contrast to a net outflow of 129.4 billion yen in February.

The data were based on reports from selected major investors, including financial institutions, and covers about 90 percent of actual transactions, according to the ministry.

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