Business / Financial Markets | TSE DATA & REPORT

Tokyo stocks extend gains on buybacks

JIJI

Stocks gained further ground on the Tokyo Stock Exchange on Monday, supported by buybacks of domestic demand-oriented issues.

The closely watched 225-issue Nikkei average ended up 56.79 points, or 0.26 percent, at 21,835.53, after gaining 118.46 points on Friday.

The Topix index of all first-section issues climbed 6.86 points, or 0.40 percent, to close at 1,736.22. It rose 10.84 points the previous trading day.

The market opened firmer thanks to buybacks of domestic demand-linked stocks, with the Nikkei average gaining about 100 points briefly in the morning, brokers said.

Pressured by profit-taking, the Nikkei and Topix gauges dipped into negative territory at one point in the afternoon.

But the key market gauges quickly swung back into positive territory, helped by continued buybacks of defensive issues, brokers said.

U.S.-led airstrikes against the Syrian regime on Friday “had little impact on the (Tokyo) market,” said Chihiro Ota, general manager for investment research and investor services at SMBC Nikko Securities Inc., noting that investor sentiment was lifted by the dollar’s resilience.

Ota also said individual investors vigorously hunted issues backed by brisk corporate earnings.

Active buying was held in check prior to a two-day summit between Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump in Florida starting Tuesday, noted Yutaka Miura, senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities Co..

Miura said investors were vigilant against Trump’s possible remarks at the summit about the trade imbalance between the two countries that “could lead to strengthening of the yen.”

Rising issues outnumbered falling ones 1,192 to 805 in the TSE’s first section, while 85 issues were unchanged.

Volume dropped to 1.310 billion shares from 1.527 billion shares on Friday.

Drugmaker Takeda, cosmetics producer Shiseido, daily goods manufacturer Kao and other domestic demand-oriented names attracted buybacks, brokers said.

Oriental Land rose 2.17 percent, with investors responding to remarks made Sunday by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Toshio Kagami pointing to a possible expansion of the company’s Tokyo Disney Resort, brokers said.

Other major winners included online brokerage firm Monex Group and semiconductor-related Yaskawa Electric.

By contrast, Yamada Denki plunged 8.99 percent after revising down on Friday its operating profit forecast for the year that ended in March to ¥38 billion from ¥74.6 billion.

Financial issues, such as megabank groups Mitsubishi UFJ, Sumitomo Mitsui and Mizuho, were downbeat after their U.S. peers fared poorly in New York trading on Friday.

In index futures trading on the Osaka Exchange, the key June contract on the Nikkei average rose 40 points to 21,850.