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Markets

Tokyo stocks open higher after US gains

  • The number of virus cases continues to soar in Japan and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga urged people to avoid gatherings, saying "the virus has no holidays".
Published December 29, 2020

TOKYO: Tokyo stocks opened higher on Tuesday after US shares finished at all-time highs as markets cheered Washington's enactment of its latest economic relief package.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 0.31 percent, or 82.35 points, to 26,936.38 at the open, while the broader Topix index advanced 0.32 percent, or 5.79 points, to 1,793.83.

All three major US indices ended at all-time highs, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.7 percent at 30,403.97.

The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.9 percent to 3,735.36, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.7 percent to 12,899.42.

The jump came after US President Donald Trump signed a $900-billion (735-billion-euro) stimulus bill late Sunday, averting a government shutdown, providing additional payments to unemployed workers and extending an eviction moratorium by a month.

"Japanese stocks are likely to continue climbing on gains of US shares," senior market strategist Yoshihiro Ito of Okasan Online Securities said in a commentary.

"In the US, although the virus continues to spread and there's a concern over the new strains, there are hopes for economic recovery thanks to coronavirus vaccines," he said.

Japan halted all new non-resident foreign arrivals from overseas from Monday until late January after finding several cases of the new variant, which experts fear is more contagious.

The number of virus cases continues to soar in Japan and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga urged people to avoid gatherings, saying "the virus has no holidays".

The dollar fetched 103.71 yen in early Asian trade against 103.76 on Monday in New York.

In Tokyo share trading, SoftBank Group rose 0.98 percent to 7,782 yen, while Uniqlo casual wear operator Fast Retailing grew 0.34 percent to 87,200 yen.

Sony jumped 1.52 percent to 10,335 yen and Panasonic gained 1.83 percent to 1,195.5 yen.

Toyota climbed 1.25 percent to 7,997 yen.

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