Business / Financial Markets | TSE DATA & REPORT

Tokyo stocks buoyed by Wall Street rise and weaker yen

JIJI

Stocks were comfortably higher on the Tokyo Stock Exchange on Friday, buoyed by overnight rises in major U.S. shares and the yen’s weakening against the dollar.

The 225-issue Nikkei average gained 82.55 points, or 0.38 percent, to end at 21,807.50, after edging up 11.74 points on Thursday.

The Topix index of all first-section issues finished up 5.70 points, or 0.35 percent, at 1,625.75, in a turnaround from the 1.72-point drop the previous day.

The Tokyo market opened higher after the Dow Jones industrial average extended gains on the New York Stock Exchange Thursday on sustained hopes for progress in the ongoing U.S.-China trade negotiations. Investors remained optimistic thanks in part to U.S. President Donald Trump’s indication that a trade agreement could be announced in about four weeks, brokers said.

Stocks lost steam in the afternoon as players held active trading in check to wait for the U.S. jobs report for March. But the yen’s weakening against the dollar underpinned the market, brokers said.

“Cyclicals were bought while defensives were sold,” amid receding concerns over a global economic slowdown, said Yoshihiko Tabei, chief analyst at Naito Securities Co.

Prior to the release of the U.S. jobs data, some investors took cues from the Nikkei’s advance to around 21,800 for selling on a rally, Tabei added.

If U.S. nonfarm payroll growth turns out to be stronger than a market consensus and leads to a Wall Street rally and the dollar’s appreciation, the Nikkei may rewrite its recent high next week, an official of a major securities firm said.

Rising issues outnumbered falling ones 1,311 to 729 in the TSE’s first section, while 100 issues were unchanged.

Volume dropped to 1.14 billion shares from Thursday’s 1.22 billion shares.

Export-oriented issues rose, with industrial robot producers Yaskawa Electric and Fanuc jumping 2.72 percent and 1.21 percent, respectively.

Renova, which makes renewable energy systems, shot up 12.84 percent on an upward revision in its earnings estimates for the year that ended last month.

Other major winners included technology giant Sony and game-maker Nintendo.

On the other hand, retailer Seven & I Holdings dropped 3.27 percent as its operating profit forecast for the year through February 2020 failed to impress investors.

Also beaten were daily goods maker Kao and Chugai Pharmaceutical.

In index futures trading on the Osaka Exchange, the key June contract on the Nikkei average rose 90 points to end at 21,790.

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