Business / Financial Markets | TSE DATA & REPORT

Nikkei hits four-month high on growing hopes for U.S.-China trade deal


Backed by increasing signs of the United States and China coming closer to each other in their trade talks, Tokyo stocks headed higher Thursday to let the benchmark Nikkei average hit a four-month closing high.

In its eight-session winning streak, last recorded in mid-September last year, the 225-issue Nikkei average ended up 161.85 points, or 0.75 percent, at 21,759.61, the best finish since May 7. The key price gauge gained 205.66 points Wednesday.

The Topix index of all issues listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s first section went up 11.44 points, or 0.72 percent, to 1,595.10, after adding 25.67 points the previous day.

Stocks shot up at the outset, with buying sentiment swelled by the Dow Jones Industrial Average’s six-session advance on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday.

The long Wall Street rally came after Beijing said it will exempt U.S. products in 16 categories from its retaliatory tariffs ahead of high-level bilateral trade talks scheduled for next month.

The Tokyo market also got a boost from U.S. President Donald Trump’s announcement shortly before the opening bell that Washington will put off raising the 25 percent tariff to 30 percent on $250 billion of Chinese goods by two weeks until Oct. 15, brokers said.

Although the Nikkei and Topix indexes both lost steam after their initial jumps, they maintained strength throughout the session, also underpinned by the yen’s drop against the dollar, a rise in Dow Jones futures in off-hours trading and brisk performance of Shanghai stocks, they said.

“The better external environment seems to have brought fresh funds into the market,” said Masayuki Otani, chief market analyst at Securities Japan Inc.

An official at a major domestic bank pointed out that foreign investors were active buyers. On the other hand, many individual Japanese players moved to take profits, an online broker said.

Otani aired the view that investors would increasingly retreat to the sidelines Friday, ahead of policy-setting meetings of the U.S. and Japanese central banks next week.

Rising issues outnumbered falling ones 1,247 to 810 on the first section, while 94 issues were unchanged.

Volume fell to 1.582 billion shares from Wednesday’s 1.685 billion shares.

China-linked issues kept attracting purchases. They included industrial robot producer Fanuc Corp. and construction machinery-maker Komatsu.

Zozo Inc. jumped 13.43 percent after Yahoo Japan Corp. announced that it will buy the online fashion mall operator.

Among other winners were air conditioner-maker Daikin Industries and mobile phone carrier KDDI Corp.

Meanwhile, drugmaker Eisai Co. snapped its five-session winning streak.

Also sold were clothing store chain Fast Retailing Co. and technology firm Kyocera Corp.

In index futures trading on the Osaka Exchange, the key December contract on the Nikkei average rose 250 points to end at 21,630.

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