Japanese shares jump as Fed chair's view eases inflation fears
TOKYO, Feb 25 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks jumped on Thursday, as investors scooped up shares after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell eased inflation concerns while boosting Wall Street shares.
The Nikkei share average .N225 gained 1.67% to 30,167.24 by 0148 GMT, rebounding from Wednesday's close below the 30,000-mark. The broader Topix .TOPX rose 1.43% to 1,930.41.
Powell told lawmakers on Wednesday it may take more than three years to reach the central bank's inflation goals, a sign the Fed plans leave interest rates unchanged for a long time to come. Wall Street, all three main indexes ended higher, on track to post strong monthly gains, with the Dow and the S&P 500 set for their best month since November. .N
"Powell's comments have given a big impact on the Japanese stock market as well," said Takatoshi Itoshima, strategist at Pictet Asset Management.
"And we can say even if the market falls one day, it can rebound easily the next day. That's how strong the fundamental is."
SoftBank Group 9984.T , up 0.17%, was the biggest contributor to the Nikkei's gain, followed by clothing shop Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing 9983.T , which rose 1.78%.
Chip-related shares jumped, with Tokyo Electron 8035.T rising 2.44% and Fanuc 6954.T adding 4.66%. TDK 6762.T gained 2.23%.
Suzuki Motor 7269.T dragged down the index by falling 3.4% after the automaker's 91-year old chairman, Osamu Suzuki, announced his retirement in June. announcement came less than a week after rival Honda Motor 7267.T appointed a new CEO. Honda shares rose 2.01%.
The largest percentage gainers on the Nikkei were Nikon 7731.T , which rose 6.05%, followed by Sumco 3436.T gaining 5.31 %.
There were 196 advancers on the index against 27 decliners.
All but one of the 33 sector sub-indexes on the exchange traded higher.
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