Japan shares climb on upbeat U.S. data, weaker yen; SoftBank Group slips

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
Japan shares climb on upbeat U.S. data, weaker yen; SoftBank Group slips
Credit: © Reuters.

* Nikkei at new 1-mth high, posts biggest weekly gain since Apr

* Weak yen pushes up machinery and auto makers

* SoftBank Group drops on news that WeWork may slash IPO valuation

By Tomo Uetake

TOKYO, Sept 6 (Reuters) - Japanese shares hit a fresh one-month high on Friday as better-than-expected U.S. economic data and news of scheduled trade talks between the United States and China bolstered appetite for global stocks.

The benchmark Nikkei average .N225 gained 0.54% to 21,199.57, its highest closing level since Aug. 1. For the week, the index advanced 2.4%, its biggest gain in five months.

"Although the mood is getting better, I don't think investors are fully optimistic," said a trader at a Japanese asset manager. "If the Nikkei can break above the 200-day moving average next week, it may create a feeling of FOMO (fear of missing out)."

The Nikkei's 200-day moving average stood around 21,227.

Global equity markets welcomed upbeat U.S. data and news that Washington and Beijing agreed to high-level talks early in October, raising hopes for a de-escalation of the damaging conflict. dollar climbed to a one-month high of 107.235 yen overnight JPY= , providing a tailwind for shares of Japanese exporters as a weak yen enhances corporate profits when they are repatriated.

Machinery .IMCHN.T and automakers .ITEQP.T , major beneficiaries of a weakening yen, were among the best performing sectors of the Tokyo's 33 subindexes, up 1.4% and 1.2%, respectively. Nissan Motor Co 7201.T rose 2.5% and Honda Motor Co 7267.T climbed 3.0%.

Bank shares gained broadly after U.S. Treasury yields ticked higher overnight but then pared gains after the Bank of Japan governor Haruhiko Kuroda told the Nikkei newspaper that deepening negative rates were among the bank's policy options. UFJ Financial Group 8306.T and Bank of Kyoto 8369.T rose 0.8% and 1.3%, respectively, while the banking sector subindex .IBNKS.T added 0.5%.

Bucking the trend, Nikkei heavyweight SoftBank Group Corp 9984.T shed 2.7% on media reports that WeWork, owner of office space sharing startup The We Company, might slash the valuation it will seek in a planned initial public offering. WeWork is backed by SoftBank Group, which has invested or committed to invest $10.65 billion since 2017. Inc 4755.T dived 5.2% after media reports that the internet firm is pushing back the commercial launch of its wireless carrier service by six months because of delays in building the network. Saison Co 8253.T gained 2.2% after it and Daiwa Securities 8601.T announced a capital alliance, with Daiwa acquiring 5% of Credit Saison's shares. Daiwa added 0.9%. broader Topix .TOPX rose 0.17% to 1,537.10, its highest close in a month, with turnover of 2.09 trillion yen ($19.5 billion), below its daily average of 2.29 trillion yen over the past year.

($1 = 107.0000 yen)

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