Japanese Market Sharply Higher

The Japanese stock market is notably higher on Friday, recouping the losses in the previous two sessions, with the benchmark Nikkei 225 surging 650 points to be just below the 28,500 level, following the mixed cues from Wall Street overnight, as traders are reacting the tamer than expected US inflation data after the market holiday on Thursday.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is gaining 654.27 points or 2.35 percent to 28,473.60, after touching a high of 28,473.81 earlier. Japanese stocks closed modestly lower on Wednesday prior to the holiday on Thursday.

Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is surging more than 7 percent and Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing is gaining almost 1 percent. Among automakers, Honda is gaining more than 3 percent and Toyota is adding almost 2 percent.

In the tech space, Advantest is gaining almost 3 percent, Tokyo Electron is adding more than 4 percent and Screen Holdings is advancing almost 4 percent.

In the banking sector, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is gaining almost 2 percent, Mizuho Financial is adding 1.5 percent and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is up more than 1 percent.

Among major exporters, Canon and Panasonic are gaining almost 1 percent each, while Sony and Mitsubishi Electric are adding more than 1 percent each.

Among the other major gainers, Dowa Holdings is soaring almost 11 percent and Pacific Metals is surging more than 8 percent, while Rakuten Group and Nippon Express are climbing almost 7 percent each. Tokyo Tatemono and Japan Steel Works are gaining more than 5 percent each, while Fanuc, JGC Holdings, Minebea Mitsumi, Keyence, Toyota Tsusho, Hitachi and Olympus are adding more than 4 percent each.

Conversely, DeNA and Oki Electric Industry are losing more than 5 percent each.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the lower 133 yen-range on Friday.

On Wall Street, stocks showed a strong move to the upside in early trading on Thursday but gave back ground over the course of the session. The major averages showed a notable downturn after reaching their best intraday levels in three months.

The major averages eventually finished the day mixed. The tech-heavy Nasdaq jumped as much as 1.3 percent but ended the day down 74.89 points or 0.6 percent to 12,779.92. The S&P 500 also edged down 2.97 points or 0.1 percent to 4,207.27, while the narrower Dow inched up 27.16 points or 0.1 percent to 33,336.67.

The major European markets also turned in a mixed performance on the day. While the French CAC 40 Index rose by 0.3 percent, the German DAX Index edged down by 0.1 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index fell by 0.6 percent.

Crude oil prices rose sharply Thursday on rising hopes for energy demand after the International Energy Agency lifted its demand outlook. The dollar's weakness following the soft inflation data also contributed to the rise in oil prices. West Texas Intermediate Crude futures ended higher by $2.41 or 2.6 percent at $94.34 a barrel.

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