Nikkei edges up as yen eases after Fed; Apple suppliers fall

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
Nikkei edges up as yen eases after Fed; Apple suppliers fall
Credit: © Reuters.

* Yen weakens vs dollar after Fed signals it might hike this year

* BOJ keeps policy steady as expected

* Apple suppliers skid

TOKYO, Sept 21 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average edged up on Thursday, helped by gains on Wall Street and a weaker yen after the U.S. Federal Reserve signalled it still expects to raise interest rates one more time this year.

The Bank of Japan kept monetary policy steady as expected earlier in the day and maintained its upbeat view of the economy, signalling its conviction that a solid recovery will gradually accelerate inflation towards its 2 percent target without additional stimulus. Nikkei .N225 ended 0.2 percent higher at 20,347.48 points, paring earlier gains which had seen it rise to as high as 20,481.27, the strongest level since August 2015.

The dollar was 0.2 percent higher at 112.40 yen JPY= after brushing 112.645, its highest since July 18 after the U.S. central bank said it will begin to reduce its balance sheet from next month and indicated that one more rate increase by the end of the year remains possible despite a recent bout of low inflation. both U.S. and Japan's monetary decisions are out, investors have started taking profits a bit," said Yutaka Miura, a senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities. "For the next few weeks, U.S. economic indicators and headlines related to a snap election will likely move the market."

Government sources have told Reuters that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is considering calling a snap election for as early as next month and will pledge to use some of the revenue from a scheduled sales tax hike in 2019 to fund spending on education and child care. shares rose, tracking their U.S. peers on the prospect of higher interest rates.

The Tokyo Stock Exchange's bank sub-index .IBNKS.T rose 1.0 percent. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group 8306.T rose 1.7 percent and Mizuho Financial Group 8411.T advanced 1.2 percent.

Shares of companies that supply components to Apple Inc AAPL.O slipped, after reports that a Rosenblatt Securities' analyst said iPhone 8 pre-orders have come in well below those for its predecessors.

Separately, Apple said on Wednesday its latest smartwatch unveiled a week ago has connectivity issues. Manufacturing Co Ltd 6981.T shed 1.1 percent, while Alps Electric Co Ltd 6770.T tumbled 2.4 percent and Nitto Denko Corp 6988.T dropped 2.6 percent. Apple shares declined 1.7 percent overnight.

The broader Topix .TOPX gained 0.1 percent, and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 .JPXNK400 was flat.

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