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Tokyo stocks end higher on Wall St gains, weaker yen

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A man stands next to a stock indicator showing share prices at the Tokyo Stock Exchange in Tokyo on April 18, 2018. Tokyo stocks closed solidly higher on April 18, helped by gains on Wall Street and a weaker yen, as investors digested news from the US-Japan summit talks. / AFP PHOTO / Behrouz MEHRI

Tokyo stocks closed solidly higher on Wednesday, helped by gains on Wall Street and a weaker yen, as investors digested news from the US-Japan summit talks.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 1.42 percent, or 310.61 points, to close at 22,158.20, while the broader Topix index was up 1.14 percent, or 19.69 points, at 1,749.67.

Wall Street stocks powered higher Tuesday on strong corporate earnings.

The dollar rose to 107.37 yen from 107.03 yen in New York Tuesday afternoon. A weak yen is positive for Japanese exporters as it inflates their earnings.

“Share prices were steadily up in the afternoon session, supported by the direct dialogue (between the US and Japan) ahead of the US-North Korea talks,” said Yoshihiro Ito, chief strategist at Okasan Online Securities.

There were no market-upsetting headlines during talks between Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and US President Donald Trump.

Government data released early Wednesday showed Japan’s politically-sensitive trade surplus with the United States edged down in March.

SoftBank Group jumped 2.89 percent to 8,201 yen with investors shrugging off news it had been slapped with a punitive tax for failing to declare part of its income from some overseas subsidiaries.

Factory automation machinery maker Fanuc climbed 2.87 percent to 27,215 yen while Nintendo was flat, inching up 0.04 percent at 44,440 yen.


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