[TOKYO] Tokyo stocks opened 0.16 per cent higher on Wednesday as the dollar held firm against the yen on speculation the US Federal Reserve could move more quickly to raise interest rates.
The Nikkei 225 index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange gained 32.30 points to 19,745.75 at the start.
The dollar was firm early Wednesday as positive US economic data strengthened the case for a Federal Reserve interest rate hike in the coming months.
The dollar bought 119.78 yen (S$1.368), compared with 119.77 yen in New York late Tuesday.
The euro bought US$1.0913 and 130.69 yen compared with US$1.0919 and 130.78 yen in US trade.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.58 per cent after positive economic figures fuelled speculation the Fed could move sooner to lift interest rates.
US data on Tuesday showed sales of new single-family homes surged in February to a seven-year high, while consumer prices rose for the first time in four months.