Tokyo stocks close at 7-month high after Wall St gains

Tokyo: Tokyo stocks rose to a seven-month high Friday, backed by a weaker yen and gains on Wall Street, as traders took comfort in more conciliatory messages on US-China trade battles.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 1.20 percent or 273.35 points to end at 23,094.67, its highest close since February 2.

The broader Topix index added 1.09 percent or 18.59 points to 1,728.61.

“Concerns over US-China trade issues took a breather and US shares rose. The Nikkei also reacted positively to a cheaper yen against the dollar,” Yoshihiro Ito, chief strategist at Okasan Online Securities, said in a commentary.

Wall Street forged higher on Thursday, driven by reports of possible US-China trade talks as well as tame consumer inflation data, which reduced fears the Federal Reserve may raise interest rates faster than it has indicated.

Risk appetite has also risen as Turkey’s central bank surprised markets with a bigger-than-expected rate hike to battle soaring inflation, easing investor concerns about emerging markets, SBI Securities said in a note.

The dollar was trading at 111.89 yen compared with 111.94 yen in New York Thursday afternoon, up from the mid-111 yen range seen when Tokyo closed Thursday.

The cheaper yen lifted major exporters, with Honda up 1.22 percent at 3,217 yen and Canon up 1.55 percent at 3,459 yen.

Sony soared 3.69 percent to 6,630 yen while Uniqlo chain operator Fast Retailing jumped 2.14 percent to 58,090 yen.