Tokyo stocks close 0.29pc higher

July 02, 2014 - 12:53:48 pm

TOKYO: Tokyo stocks closed 0.29 percent higher on Wednesday, as the yen weakened and after Wall Street put in a strong performance with the Dow and S&P 500 powering to new record finishes.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index added 43.77 points to finish at 15,369.97, while the Topix index of all first-section shares gained 0.37 percent, or 4.70 points, to 1,280.78.

New York stocks opened the third quarter with big gains following strong US auto sales and upbeat Chinese manufacturing data.

The Dow climbed 0.77 percent, the S&P 500 added 0.67 percent -- both ending at all-time highs. The Nasdaq surged 1.14 percent.

The fresh records in the US equity market lifted the dollar against the yen, a positive factor for shares of Japanese exporters as it boosts their profitability.

"Market momentum remains strong," said Mizuho Securities senior technical analyst Yutaka Miura.

"Upcoming US jobs data on Friday should help to reinforce hopes that the US economic recovery remains on track," he told Dow Jones Newswires.

The Tokyo stock market has also been winning support on expectations that Japan's massive public pension fund -- the world's biggest -- will boost its stock holdings at home and abroad.

The bond-heavy fund is facing growing pressure for better returns owing to the swelling costs of a rapidly ageing society.

Toyota shares rose 0.64 percent to 6,209 yen, Sony added 0.93 percent to 1,721 yen but Uniqlo clothing chain operator Fast Retailing slipped 0.35 percent to 33,335 yen.

In currency markets, the dollar bought 101.60 yen, up from 101.53 yen in New York Tuesday afternoon. (AFP)

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