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Japanese Market Notably Higher

The Japanese stock market is extending its winning streak to a third day on Wednesday following the positive cues overnight from Wall Street amid signs of progress in U.S.-China trade talks. Negotiations between the two countries have been extended to a third day.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is rising 203.64 points or 1.01 percent to 20,407.68, after touching a high of 20,428.86 earlier. Japanese shares rose on Tuesday.

Among the major exporters, Panasonic is rising more than 3 percent, Sony is advancing more than 1 percent, Mitsubishi Electric is higher by almost 1 percent and Canon is adding 0.5 percent.

The Nikkei reported, citing a Sony executive, that the company will consider moving some production out of China if the U.S. moves ahead with higher tariffs.

In the tech sector, Advantest is losing more than 4 percent, while Tokyo Electron is adding 0.4 percent. Among the major automakers, Honda and Toyota are rising 0.4 percent each.

In the banking sector, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is lower by 0.2 percent, while Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is adding 0.3 percent. In the oil space, Inpex is edging down less than 0.1 percent and Japan Petroleum is declining almost 1 percent despite a more than 2 percent increase in crude oil prices overnight.

Among the other major gainers, Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma is rising more than 6 percent, while Kikkoman, Cyberagent and Recruit Holdings are higher by almost 5 percent each.

A court in South Korea has approved a request to seize South Korean assets of Japanese steelmaking giant Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp for refusing to comply with a court order to pay compensation to four South Koreans for wartime forced labor. However, shares of Nippon Steel are advancing more than 1 percent.

On the flip side, Taiyo Yuden is losing almost 7 percent and Chiyoda Corp. is declining more than 3 percent.

On the economic front, Japan will provide November figures for labor cash earnings today.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the upper 108 yen-range on Wednesday.

On Wall Street, stocks closed higher on Tuesday for the third straight session amid optimism about trade talks between the U.S. and China. The second day of negotiations coincided with an unannounced visit by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, with some analysts saying China could use Kim's visit as a bargaining chip in the trade talks.

The Dow surged up 256.10 points or 1.1 percent to 23,787.45, the Nasdaq jumped 73.53 points or 1.1 percent to 6,897.00 and the S&P 500 shot up 24.72 points or 1 percent to 2,574.41.

The major European markets also moved to the upside on Tuesday. While the French CAC 40 Index jumped by 1.2 percent, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index and the German DAX Index climbed by 0.7 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively.

Crude oil prices moved up sharply on Tuesday, extending gains to a seventh successive session, riding on optimism about U.S.-China trade discussions and reports about output reductions by oil producers. WTI crude for February ended up $1.26 or 2.6 percent at $49.78 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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