Business / Financial Markets | TSE DATA & REPORT

Tokyo stocks rise on futures-led buying, closing above 20,500

JIJI

Stocks continued to rise Tuesday, buoyed by futures-led buying.

The Nikkei 225 rose 195.59 points, or 0.96 percent, to end at 20,555.29, the first finish above 20,500 since Dec. 19. On Friday, the key market gauge gained 195.90 points. The market was closed Monday for a national holiday.

The Topix, which covers all first-section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, closed 12.99 points, or 0.85 percent, higher at 1,542.72. It climbed 7.72 points Friday.

After a sluggish opening traced to Wall Street’s slump Monday, the Tokyo market quickly wiped out the losses and returned to the sunny side thanks to buying on dips, market sources said.

The market accelerated its upswing later, helped by futures-led purchases, according to the sources.

Masahiro Ichikawa, senior strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Co., expressed his belief that export-oriented issues attracted buying owing to the yen’s weakening against the dollar.

Ryuta Otsuka, strategist at the investment information department of Toyo Securities Co., attributed Tuesday’s strength to buybacks prompted by solid performances of Chinese equities.

The market’s topside was limited, however, ahead of the release later this month of earnings reports by major Japanese companies, Otsuka noted.

“Basically, a wait-and-see mood prevailed (in the market)” before a vote to be held later on Tuesday by Britain’s parliament on the agreement the country has negotiated with the European Union on its exit from the EU, or Brexit, said Chihiro Ota, general manager for investment research and investor services at SMBC Nikko Securities Inc.

Rising issues outnumbered falling ones 1,479 to 577 in the first section, while 72 issues were unchanged.

Volume edged up to 1.345 billion shares from 1.295 billion Friday.

Online brokerage house Monex Group ended 3.38 percent higher after the Financial Services Agency officially registered Coincheck, a subsidiary, as a cryptocurrency exchange operator under the payment services law Friday.

Drugstore chain operator Cosmos Pharmaceutical was also buoyant after announcing Friday that its operating profit for the six months through November grew 19.8 percent from a year before to ¥12.327 billion.

Other major winners included semiconductor-related Tokyo Electron and industrial robot producer Fanuc.

By contrast, clothing store chain Fast Retailing, beer brewer Asahi Group and daily goods manufacturer Kao met with selling.