Tokyo stocks end 2% higher on US gains

TOKYO (AFP): Tokyo stocks closed higher Thursday after rallies on Wall Street while investors kept an eye on the surging dollar and central bank policy decisions.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index climbed 2.31 percent, or 634.98 points, to 28,065.28, while the broader Topix index ended up 2.19 percent, or 41.97 points, at 1,957.62.

“Japanese shares rebounded after all three US indexes gained,” Okasan Online Securities said in a note. But the market remained cautious about the Federal Reserve’s campaign to tame inflation amid fears that its aggressive rate hikes will harm the economy.

Shortly before the opening bell, the Japanese government revised upward the nation’s gross domestic product for April-June, revealing a 0.9% expansion from the prior quarter.

That was slightly higher than the market expectation of 0.7 percent. The dollar changed hands at 143.60 yen, compared with 143.79 yen in New York.

Investors are waiting for an expected rate hike decision by the European Central Bank later in the day, while Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell’s comments at a monetary conference will also be closely followed, analysts said.

Toyota ended up 2.26 percent at 2,080.5 yen, Canon added 2.17 percent to 3,291 yen and SoftBank Group climbed 2.44 percent to 5,499 yen.

Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing rallied 2.15 percent to 83,110 yen.