Roundup: Tokyo stocks close higher on bargain hunting, hopes for U.S. stimulus

2021-02-22 11:05:19 GMT2021-02-22 19:05:19(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

TOKYO, Feb. 22 (Xinhua) -- Tokyo stocks closed higher Monday, bringing an end to a three-day losing streak, as investors picked up bargains following the market's recent decline, with risk appetite toward high-tech issues improving on hopes for U.S. stimulus to further help reboot the pandemic-hit economy.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average added 138.11 points, or 0.46 percent, from Friday to close the day at 30,156.03.

The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, rose 9.40 points, or 0.49 percent, to finish at 1,938.35.

Local brokers said that from the get-go bargain hunting was the predominant theme for investors who picked up issues that had retreated following the Nikkei's run of closing lows.

They added that buying slowed in later trade as some traders looked to lock in gains ahead of a national holiday in Japan on Tuesday.

"Trading was dominated by hedge funds, who sought to hunt for bargains in the morning but they turned sellers later in tandem with a fall in U.S. stock futures in after-hours trading," Yutaka Miura, senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities Co., was quoted as saying.

Large-capped technology shares found favor on hopes that a hefty U.S. stimulus package that will be be voted on in the U.S. House of Representatives this week will come to fruition and trigger the pandemic-hit economy's recovery.

From a broader perspective, traders here said that the pace of the world's largest economy's recovery would have a bearing on the global economic revival.

"We could see the scale of the stimulus plan on Friday and hopes grew about a faster recovery in the U.S. economy and corporate earnings," Masahiro Ichikawa, chief market strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui DS Asset Management Co., was quoted as saying.

By the close of play, electrical appliance, air transportation, marine transportation and nonferrous metal issues comprised those that advanced the most.

Technology issues gaining traction included Screen Holdings adding 3.5 percent and Tokyo Electron soaring 6.3 percent.

Shipping issues advanced on hopes for the global economic recovery and increased physical trade in the near future as COVID-19 vaccinations gather pace around the the world.

As such, Mitsui O.S.K. Lines rose 5.3 percent, while Nippon Yusen gained 4.9 percent.

Travel-linked stocks also attracted buying amid hopes COVID-19 vaccine campaigns around the world would be a major catalyst for demand to return.

Among air transportation issues that rose, ANA Holdings climbed 5.8 percent, while Japan Airlines gained 5.7 percent.

Similarly, department store operators advanced on hopes for increased patronage if COVID-19 restrictions currently in place in major urban regions in Japan, including Tokyo, Osaka and Aichi prefectures, are lifted and the vaccine rollouts here gather steam.

Takashimaya added 1.6 percent, while J.Front Retailing gained 2.4 percent.

Issues that rose outpaced those that fell by 1,542 to 577 on the First Section, while 75 ended the day unchanged.

On the main section on Monday, 1,250.43 million shares changed hands, rising from Friday's volume of 1,223.74 million shares.

The turnover on the first trading day of the week came to 2,463.67 billion yen (23.32 billion U.S. dollars). Enditem