By Junko Fujita
TOKYO, Jan 12 (Reuters) - Japan's benchmark Nikkei share average recovered from early falls on Tuesday to hit a fresh three-decade high, with drug makers leading the charge following a report of another effective COVID-19 treatment.
"Investors bought back stocks as soon as the market started falling, showing the fundamental strength of demand," said Masahiro Ichikawa, chief market strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui DS Asset Management.
"They got confidence in the market as U.S. futures rose overnight." MKTS/GLOB .N
Retail stocks also gained, led by a 9% surge in Ryohin Keikaku 7453.T after the Muji retail stores operator posted a 69% jump in quarterly net profit. Lawson 2651.T rose 3.86% and Watts Co 2735.T jumped 9.3%.
Automakers slid after Toyota Motor 7203.T and Honda Motor 7267.T said they would cut vehicle production this month due to a shortage of semiconductors. Motor fell 1.08% and Honda Motor declined 1.35%.
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