Japan stocks end higher as tech sector back in favour

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
Japan stocks end higher as tech sector back in favour
Credit: © Reuters.

By Stanley White

TOKYO, March 12 (Reuters) - Japanese shares rose for a fourth straight session on Friday, as technology stocks bounced back while expectations that low interest rates and big fiscal spending would continue to support global economic growth kept investor sentiment supported.

The Nikkei 225 Index .N225 ended up 1.73% at 29,717.83. The broader Topix .TOPX rose 1.36% to 1,951.06. For the week, the Nikkei and Topix gained nearly 3% each.

Technology and energy shares rebounded from recent losses following their U.S. peers, but that was partly offset by selling in the real estate and financial sectors.

Overall sentiment remained positive because of strong expectations that the global economic growth will accelerate as more countries vaccinate their citizens for the novel coronavirus.

"Japanese stocks are still in an upward trend, but the U.S. economy is bouncing back so quickly that eventually the Federal Reserve will have to start talking about tapering bond purchases," said Norihiro Fujito, chief investment strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS ) Securities.

"When that happens, we will see an 8%-10% correction in Japanese stocks, but the market will quickly bounce back because global growth is getting stronger."

Shares in e-commerce company Rakuten Inc 4755.T jumped by 8.64% after reports it would form a capital alliance with Japan Post Holdings Co 6178.T , whose shares rose 4.89%.

Start-up investor SoftBank Group Corp 9984.T rose 3.35% after South Korean e-commerce company Coupang CPNG.N , in which SoftBank holds a 35.1% stake, was valued at around $109 billion in its debut on Thursday. ride hailing company Grab Holdings Inc, which is also backed by SoftBank, is in talks to go public through a merger that could value the company at nearly $40 billion, people said. underperformers among the Topix 30 were Astellas Pharma Inc 4503.T , down 0.68%, followed by Tokio Marine Holdings Inc 8766.T , losing 0.43%.

There were 156 advancers on the Nikkei index against 67 decliners on Friday.

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