* Nikkei off 16 pct in 2016, retracing 40 pct 'Abenomics'
* Ono Pharma soars after forecasting strong sales for new
By Ayai Tomisawa
TOKYO, April 12 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average
rose on Tuesday morning as the dollar gained versus the yen in
early morning trade, lifting cyclical stocks such as exporters
as well as recently battered banking shares.
Weakness in the dollar kept the market worried after it
slumped to a 17-month low of 107.63 yen JPY= on Monday but by
0146 GMT on Tuesday, the dollar stood at 108.14 yen.
The Nikkei .N225 gained 1.0 percent to 15,903.30 in
midmorning trade. The benchmark index has fallen 16 percent this
year, while it is retracing about 40 percent of gains since the
start of 'Abenomics' in 2012.
Traders said that Japanese equities are swayed by foreign
exchange rates, with Japan Inc's last fiscal years' earnings
announcements scheduled within a few weeks. Investors will
likely start taking positions after companies release their
forecasts for this fiscal year, they said.
They added that the Nikkei may stay sluggish until then, as
many investors remain sceptical of 'Abenomics."
"Investors are frustrated about the lack of effective
measures against the strong yen," said Hikaru Sato, senior
technical analyst at Daiwa Securities. "Confidence in Japanese
stocks has waned since the end of last year and it still hasn't
Banking stocks were leading the gains on Tuesday, with
Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group 8306.T rising 4.8 percent and
Mizuho Financial Group 8411.T gaining 4.2 percent.
Exporters gained ground, with Toyota Motor Corp 7203.T
gaining 3.2 percent and Honda Motor Co 7267.T adding 3.3
Outperforming the market was Ono Pharmaceutical Co 4528.T ,
which jumped as much as 14 percent after the drugmaker said its
sales forecast for its new cancer treatment drug will likely be
126 billion yen for this fiscal year which ends in March 2017.
It is about six times the drug's sales of 21.2 billion yen
for the last fiscal year through March.
The broader Topix .TOPX added 1.4 percent to 1,297.76 and
the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 .JPXNK400 advanced 1.3 percent to
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