The benchmark Nikkei average extended its winning streak to four sessions Tuesday, despite being pushed down by selling of stocks that went ex-dividend.
The 225-issue Nikkei average inched up 48.18 points, or 0.16%, to close at 29.432.70. On Monday, the index climbed 207.82 points.
The Topix index of all first section issues ended down 15.48 points, or 0.78%, at 1,977.86, after rising 9.18 points the previous day.
The market began on a weak note as many issues were traded without rights to dividends for the fiscal year ending Wednesday.
But the downside was limited thanks to the U.S. Dow Jones Industrial Average marking another record high overnight.
The Nikkei moved narrowly around the previous day’s close throughout the day, propped up by buying demand for heavyweight components.
On the other hand, the Topix was weighed down by falls of financial sector names amid concerns over possible impacts from a U.S. hedge fund defaulting on margin calls last week.
“Stocks were underpinned by expectations for the reinvestment of dividends, as well as brighter sentiment fueled by rises in Asian stock markets,” said Hirohumi Yamamoto, strategist at Toyo Securities Co.
“Although major financial institutions have said that (the margin call defaults) have not affected them, market players have yet to grasp the full picture of the incident and remain too wary to buy banking issues,” Yamamoto added.
An official at a major securities firm predicted, “It will take some time for the market to fully factor in” the hedge fund issue.
On the TSE first section, falling issues outnumbered rising ones 1,564 to 541, with 55 issues unchanged. Volume sank to 1.340 billion shares from Monday’s 1.826 billion shares.
Major Nikkei components Fast Retailing and Tokyo Electron rose 3.17% and 1.77%.
Shipping names such as Kawasaki Kisen turned up on expectations for economic recovery from the coronavirus crisis.
Komatsu jumped 3.79% after it was learned that the construction machinery-maker will be included in a space exploration-related exchange-traded fund by a U.S. asset management firm.
On the other hand, megabanks such as Mitsubishi UFJ and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial succumbed to selling on concerns over the margin call defaults, as did securities brokerage Nomura Holdings.
Insurance names were among other losers.
In index futures trading on the Osaka Exchange, the key June contract on the Nikkei average advanced 400 points to end at 29,480.
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