Japanese Market Significantly Higher At Fresh 33-year Highs

The Japanese stock market is significantly higher on Friday, extending the gains in the previous session, with the benchmark Nikkei 225 breaching the 31,000 mark to climb back to fresh 33-year highs, following the mostly positive cues from Wall Street overnight, boosted by gains across most sectors, led by technology stocks.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is gaining 231.05 points or 0.75 percent to 31,032.18, after touching a high of 31,065.40 earlier. Japanese stocks closed notably higher on Thursday.

Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is edging up 0.5 percent, while Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing is edging down 0.1 percent. Among automakers, Honda is edging up 0.2 percent and Toyota is edging up 0.3 percent.

In the tech space, Advantest is gaining almost 3 percent and Screen Holdings is surging more than 6 percent, while Tokyo Electron is adding almost 5 percent.

In the banking sector, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial are edging down 0.3 to 0.4 percent each, while Mizuho Financial is edging up 0.1 percent.

Among major exporters, Panasonic is edging up 0.3 percent, while Mitsubishi Electric and Sony are gaining almost 1 percent each. Canon is edging down 0.1 percent.

Among the other major gainers, Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Taiyo Yuden are surging almost 6 percent each, while Renesas Electronics, Marubeni, Hoya, Keisei Electric Railway and Toppan are gaining almost 4 percent each. Resonac Holdings, Fujikura and Sumco are adding more than 3 percent each, while Central Japan Railway and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries are up almost 3 percent each.

Conversely, there are no other major losers.

In economic news, overall consumer prices in the Tokyo region of Japan were up 3.2 percent on year in May, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday. That was shy of expectations for an increase of 3.9 percent and was down from 3.5 percent in April.

Core CPI, which excludes the volatile costs of food, also was up 3.2 percent on year in May - beneath expectations for a rise of 3.3 percent and down from 3.5 percent in the previous month.

Meanwhile, producer prices in Japan were up 1.6 percent on year in April, the Bank of Japan said on Friday. That exceeded expectations for an increase of 1.4 percent following the upwardly revised 1.7 percent gain in March (originally 1.6 percent). On a monthly basis, producer prices rose 0.2 percent - easing from the 0.6 percent gain in the previous month.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the higher 139 yen-range on Friday.

On Wall Street, stocks moved mostly higher during trading on Thursday, regaining ground after moving sharply lower on Tuesday and Wednesday. The Nasdaq showed a particularly strong upward move, reflecting strength in the tech sector.

The Nasdaq surged 213.93 points or 1.7 percent to 12,698.09, bouncing back near the nine-month closing high set on Monday. The S&P 500 also jumped 36.04 points or 0.9 percent to 4,151.28, while the narrower Dow bucked the downtrend and edged down 35.27 points or 0.1 percent to 32,764.65.

Meanwhile, the major European markets also moved to the downside on the day. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index declined by 0.7 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index both dipped by 0.3 percent.

Crude oil prices fell sharply Thursday, snapping a three-day winning streak, after Russia's Deputy Prime Minister said Russia won't agree on any additional cut in crude production. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for July ended down $2.51 or 3.4 percent at $71.83 a barrel.

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