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Markets

Tokyo stocks open higher with eyes on virus cases

  • The firm's CEO stepped down on Wednesday after a first buyout offer stirred internal turmoil.
Published April 15, 2021

TOKYO: Tokyo stocks opened slightly higher on Thursday in cautious trade after a mixed close on Wall Street with fears over an expansion of virus infections in Japan.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index was up 0.07 percent or 19.67 points at 29,640.66 in early trade, while the broader Topix index edged up 0.42 percent or 8.12 points to 1,960.30.

Japanese shares are seen moving in a narrow range "with a wait-and-see attitude increasing following a mixed close for US shares," Okasan Online Securities senior strategist Yoshihiro Ito said in a note.

"Concerns over a fourth wave of virus infections are likely to weigh on the market as the number of (daily) new cases across Japan topped 4,000," he added.

Investors are also increasingly cautious ahead of the Japanese corporate earnings season in coming weeks, Mizuki Securities added.

The dollar fetched 108.82 yen in early Asian trade, against 108.94 yen in New York late Wednesday.

In Tokyo, Toshiba was up 1.13 percent at 4,915 yen as investors watched developments in possible buyout offers for the Japanese engineering giant by foreign funds.

The firm's CEO stepped down on Wednesday after a first buyout offer stirred internal turmoil.

Automakers were higher, with Toyota trading up 0.65 percent at 8,540 yen and its smaller rival Honda up 1.86 percent at 3,348 yen.

Sony was up 0.90 percent at 12,300 yen, Panasonic was up 2.07 percent at 1,427.5 yen, and chip-testing equipment maker Advantest was up 1.32 percent at 10,770 yen.

On Wall Street, the Dow ended up 0.2 percent at 33,730.89, but the broad-based S&P slipped 0.4 percent and the tech-rich Nasdaq closed down 1.0 percent.

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