TOKYO, June 25 (Xinhua) — Tokyo stocks closed higher Friday following an upbeat lead from Wall Street overnight, although concerns over Japan’s rising COVID-19 cases ahead of the Olympics to be held in the capital in less than a month capped gains.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average added 190.95 points, or 0.66 percent, from Thursday to close the day at 29,066.18.

The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, gained 15.55 points, or 0.80 percent, to finish at 1,962.65.

Local brokers said investors cheered U.S. stocks gaining ground overnight, which boosted cyclical and technology issues here.

They added, however, the market’s upside was capped by concerns Japan’s COVID-19 pandemic could worsen as new infections are on the rise, with the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics set to start in less than a month.

“Today’s market is tracking Wall Street’s strong gains. But investors, particularly in Japan, are getting wary of U.S. markets taking a pause anytime soon,” Shoichi Arisawa, general manager of the investment research department at IwaiCosmo Securities, was quoted as saying.

“Prospects of an economic recovery in Japan are getting unclear as the number of new COVID-19 infections is on the rise again, and the pandemic could worsen as the country plans to conduct the Olympics,” Arisawa added.

By the close of play, issues that rose outpaced those that fell by 1,595 to 504 on the First Section, while 94 ended the day unchanged.

The U.S. dollar’s comparative strength against the Japanese yen, with the greenback trading in the upper 110-yen zone, helped lift exporters who are typically reliant on a weaker yen to boost profits when repatriated.

Panasonic climbed 4.9 percent, following reports it had sold its entire stake in U.S. electric vehicle maker Tesla Inc. last fiscal year.

Mazda Motor Corp., meanwhile, soared 8.7 percent, to become the Nikkei’s biggest gainer.

Chip-related issues followed their U.S. peers higher, with Tokyo Electron adding 0.7 percent, while Advantest rose 1.5 percent.

Industrial robotics maker Fanuc, for its part, ended the day 1.7 percent higher.

Among cyclical issues finding traction, steelmakers attracted buying.

JFE Holdings jumped 4.2 percent, Nippon Steel closed up 4.4 percent, while Kobe Steel advanced 4.8 percent.

Toshiba was a notable loser, dropping 0.6 percent, following its shareholders on Friday voting to oust its board chairman and another director following a major governance and government-implicated collusion scandal.

On the main section on Friday, 904.26 million shares changed hands, rising from Thursday’s volume of 842.48 million shares.

The turnover on the final trading day of the week came to 2,142.24 billion yen (19.34 billion U.S. dollars). Enditem


Categories: COVID-19News


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