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Topix scales over 5-month high as tech rally offsets transport share slump

reuters.com · 09/02/2021 03:23
Topix scales over 5-month high as tech rally offsets transport share slump

- Japan's Topix ended at a more than five-month peak on Thursday, recovering from earlier losses, as a tech rally offset a slump in transport shares.

The Topix .TOPX rose 0.14% to 1,983.57, its highest closing level since March 29. The index rallied for a fourth straight session. The Nikkei share average .N225 ended 0.33% higher at its highest since July 14 of 28,543.51.

NTT NTT and Nintendo NTDOY were the top two performers among the 30 core Topix names, gaining 2.03% and 1.81%, respectively, while Sony Group SONY added 1.40%.

Chipmakers rose with Advantest ATEYY adding 2.07% and Tokyo Electron TOELF up 1.16%. Mobile game maker Nexon NEXOF was the Nikkei's second-best performer, rallying 2.80%.

The best performer was sauce-maker Kikkoman KIKOF, jumping 4.19%.

Those gains offset the drag from a record 13.36% slump for West Japan Railway (JR West) WJRYF after saying it would sell new shares, which pulled down other rail and transport stocks. nT9N2PX00E

Despite gains overall, market participants said a monthly U.S. employment report due Friday, considered crucial to the Federal Reserve's plans for tapering stimulus, was keeping investors cautious.

"It's difficult to chase the market higher, although technically you can feel there's fundamental strength supporting prices," said a person at a domestic securities firm.

The Nikkei's three worst performing stocks were all railways. JR East EJPRF slumped 6.90% and JR Central CJPRY lost 4.33%.

Airlines ANA Holdings ALNPY and Japan Airlines JPNRF fell 2.57% and 1.38%, respectively.

The land transport sub-sector .IRAIL.T was the worst performer on the Topix with a drop of 3.18%, while air transport .IAIRL.T fell 2.04%.

(Reporting by Tokyo markets team; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu and Rashmi Aich)