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Tokyo: Stocks open 0.75% higher

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Tokyo stocks opened 0.75 per cent higher on Wednesday as a weaker yen and stronger-than-expected Japanese growth data boosted the market.

[TOKYO] Tokyo stocks opened 0.75 per cent higher on Wednesday as a weaker yen and stronger-than-expected Japanese growth data boosted the market.

The Nikkei 225 index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange climbed 149.21 points to 20,175.59 at the start.

Japanese government data released early Wednesday showed the world's third largest economy grew 0.6 per cent in the first quarter after limping out of recession in the previous three months.

The latest growth figure was bigger than a revised 0.3 per cent expansion in the final quarter of 2014 and beat the market median forecast of a 0.4 per cent on-quarter increase.

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Takata shares were untraded at the start after the auto parts giant doubled the recall of US cars using its potentially deadly airbags to nearly 34 million vehicles, a record in the US automotive history.

The weaker yen also lifted investor sentiment towards Japanese exporters, whose profitability benefits from the weaker currency.

The dollar rallied Tuesday on the European Central Bank's plan to step up asset purchases under its massive stimulus programme and strong US housing data.

The dollar bought 120.70 yen early Wednesday, in line with 120.68 yen in New York but well above 119.94 yen in Tokyo earlier Tuesday.

The euro drifted lower, buying US$1.1138 and 134.47 yen from US$1.1149 and 134.54 yen in US trade.

On Wall Street the Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 0.07 per cent to 18,312.39 on Tuesday, striking an all-time high for the second day in a row.

But the broad-based S&P 500 slipped 0.06 per cent to 2,127.83, ending a three-day streak of record closing peaks.

AFP

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