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Japanese Market Surges

The Japanese stock market is surging on Monday despite the negative cues from Wall Street Friday after a report from the U.S. Labor Department showed employment in the U.S. fell much more than expected in the month of March. Investor sentiment received a boost after New York State reported its first decline in the number of daily coronavirus-related deaths as well as hospitalizations on Sunday.

Meanwhile, reports indicated that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe intends to declare a state of emergency in the country following a surge in the number of infections in Tokyo and other major cities.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is gaining 476.02 points or 2.67 percent to 18,296.21, after rising to a high of 18,419.57 earlier. Japanese shares ended flat with a positive bias on Friday after four days of losses.

Market heavyweight SoftBank is rising more than 3 percent and Fast Retailing is advancing more than 2 percent.

The major exporters are higher on a weaker yen. Sony is rising more than 2 percent, Mitsubishi Electric is advancing almost 2 percent, Panasonic is higher by more than 1 percent and Canon is adding 0.3 percent.

In the tech space, Advantest and Tokyo Electron are rising more than 2 percent each. Among automakers, Honda is gaining more than 5 percent and Toyota is higher by more than 4 percent.

In the oil sector, Inpex is advancing more than 4 percent and Japan Petroleum is higher by more than 3 percent after crude oil prices gained almost 12 percent Friday.

Among the other major gainers, Fujifilm Holdings is climbing more than 7 percent, KDDI Corp. is higher by almost 7 percent, and NTT Docomo is rising almost 6 percent.

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

On Wall Street, stocks closed sharply lower on Friday after a report from the Labor Department showed employment in the U.S. fell much more than expected in the month of March. The report said employment plunged by 701,000 jobs in March after jumping by an upwardly revised 275,000 jobs in February. Economists had expected employment to slump by 100,000 jobs compared to the addition of 273,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.

The Dow tumbled 360.91 points or 1.7 percent to 21,052.53, the Nasdaq plunged by 114.23 points or 1.5 percent to 7,373.08 and the S&P 500 slumped 38.25 points or 1.5 percent to 2,488.65.

The major European markets also moved to the downside on Friday. While the German DAX Index fell by 0.5 percent, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index and the French CAC 40 Index plunged by 1.2 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively.

Crude oil prices rose sharply on Friday, climbing up for a second successive day amid rising hopes of deep production cuts by major oil producers, including Russia and Saudi Arabia. WTI crude oil futures for May ended up $3.02, or almost 12 percent, at $28.34 a barrel.

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