Japanese shares gain tracking U.S. futures; tech and pharma stocks boost

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
Japanese shares gain tracking U.S. futures; tech and pharma stocks boost
Credit: © Reuters.

TOKYO, Jan 25 (Reuters) - Japanese shares rose on Monday, erasing early losses, led by tech and pharma stocks as U.S. futures rose on hopes that lawmakers would soon pass a massive economic stimulus to revive growth in the world's largest economy.

The Nikkei share average .N225 gained 0.67% at 28.822.29, after declining 0.2% earlier, while the broader Topix .TOPX inched up 0.29% to 1,862.00.

"U.S. markets moved irregularly last week but investors were relieved this morning after seeing the rise in U.S. futures," said Masahiro Ichikawa, chief market strategist, Sumitomo Mitsui DS Asset Management.

Asian shares also rose as concerns over rising COVID-19 cases and delays in vaccine supplies were eclipsed by expectations of a $1.9 trillion fiscal stimulus plan to help revive the U.S. economy.

U.S. lawmakers from both parties said they had agreed that getting the COVID-19 vaccine to Americans should be a priority, but some Republicans objected to such a hefty package only a month after Congress passed a $900 billion relief measure. shares advanced in Japan, with Toshiba 6502.T surging 16.88% after the Tokyo Stock Exchange approved on Friday the electronics and infrastructure conglomerate's return to the bourse's first section. components maker Alps Alpine 6770.T jumped 6.12%, making it the biggest gainer on the Nikkei index, and camera maker Nikon 7731.T rose 5.17%.

Drugmakers rose on renewed hopes of COVID-19 vaccine roll-outs. Takeda Pharmaceutical 4502.T added 3.54% after Japan's biggest drugmaker last week announced the start of a study of Moderna Inc's MRNA.O coronavirus vaccine in the country. 4523.T rose 2.8% and Astellas Pharma 4503.T gained 2.1%.

Sumitomo Corp 8053.T rose 1.55% as local media reported the trading house would stop investing in new oil development projects as it shifts away from fossil fuels businesses.

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