Tokyo stocks close up 1.04pc

April 02, 2014 - 10:19:45 am

TOKYO: Tokyo shares rose 1.04 percent Wednesday, tracking a rally on Wall Street following solid manufacturing data and a Federal Reserve assurance of support for the US economy.

The headline Nikkei 225 index added 154.33 points to close at 14,946.32, while the Topix index of all first-section shares added 0.59 percent, or 7.11 points, to 1,211.36.

US manufacturing activity gained pace in March, helped by a pick-up in new orders and a rebound in production, the Institute for Supply Management said.

Analysts also pointed to comments Monday from Fed chief Janet Yellen that unemployment was still a big challenge for the economy and the bank will maintain extraordinary monetary measures until the jobless rate falls significantly.

The news helped Wall Street higher -- the S&P 500 jumped 0.70 percent to its first record close since March 7, while the Dow added 0.46 percent and the Nasdaq climbed 1.64 percent -- which provided a catalyst for the Nikkei.

"This upward momentum is likely to continue," Mitsushige Akino, chief fund manager at Ichiyoshi Investment Management, told Dow Jones Newswires.

Renesas Electronics shares, which soared as much as 19 percent in earlier trade, closed 5.99 percent higher to 831 yen after the leading Nikkei business daily said Apple was in talks with the Japanese chipmaker to buy one of its units for about $480 million.

A weaker yen helped boost some exporter shares with Toyota up 0.58 percent to 5,847 yen, while rival Nissan jumped 1.52 percent to 935 yen.

Sony was down 1.04 percent to finish at 1,099 yen.

In forex trading, the dollar rose to 103.79 yen, from 103.66 yen in New York on Tuesday. (AFP)