Tokyo stocks added modest gains Friday following rises in U.S. equities amid sustained expectations for a preliminary trade deal between the United States and China.
The Nikkei average of 225 blue chips listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange rose 54.31 points, or 0.23 percent, to end at 23,354.40, after advancing 164.86 points Thursday.
The Topix index of all TSE first-section issues finished up 1.95 points, or 0.11 percent, at 1,713.36, following an 8.14-point rise the previous day.
Stocks gathered steam in early morning trading, with investors taking heart from rises in all three key U.S. market gauges — the Dow Jones industrial average, the Nasdaq composite index and the S&P 500 — on Thursday.
According to brokers, Wall Street sentiment improved after U.S. President Donald Trump said at a White House luncheon, “We are having very good discussions with China.”
The market lost its upward momentum later, with the Topix briefly dipping into negative territory. However, the Nikkei remained buoyant.
Players retreated to the sidelines to wait for the release later Friday of the U.S. government’s jobs report for November as well as fresh news on the U.S.-China trade front, brokers said.
Yutaka Miura, senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities Co., noted that the market was underpinned by expectations for the effects of the ¥26 trillion stimulus package including ¥13 trillion in new fiscal spending, adopted by the government Thursday.
But investors refrained from active trading as “they have grown eager to see the employment data since other closely watched U.S. economic indicators proved gloomy earlier this week,” Masahiro Ichikawa, senior strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui DS Asset Management Co., said, particularly mentioning the Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing index.
On the TSE’s first section, rising issues outnumbered falling ones 1,308 to 737 while 112 issues were unchanged. Volume dropped to 1.05 billion shares from Thursday’s 1.15 billion.
Investors hunted contractor Obayashi, civil engineering firm Fudo Tetra and other issues seen to benefit from fresh government spending to beef up Japan’s disaster resilience as part of the newly adopted economic measures.
Drug maker Eisai jumped 5.81 percent on news reports that its U.S. partner Biogen will resume Alzheimer’s drug studies.
Among other winners were semiconductor test device maker Advantest and job information provider Recruit Holdings.
On the other hand, Round One dropped 3.23 percent due to weak sales in November.
Tire manufacturer Bridgestone and beverage maker Asahi Group also fared poorly.
In index futures trading on the Osaka Exchange, the key December contract on the Nikkei average rose 110 points to end at 23,420.
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