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Tokyo: Stocks open higher on virus hopes

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Tokyo stocks opened higher on Monday on expectations the state of emergency will be lifted for the whole nation including economic powerhouse Tokyo.

[TOKYO] Tokyo stocks opened higher on Monday on expectations the state of emergency will be lifted for the whole nation including economic powerhouse Tokyo.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index was up 1.37 per cent or 279.75 points at 20,667.91 in early trade, while the broader Topix index advanced 1.16 per cent or 17.20 points to 1,495.00.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government is widely expected to lift the state of emergency for Tokyo later in the day, after last week lifting it for the western Osaka region.

Traders are caught between concerns over a second coronavirus wave and US-China tensions on one hand and hopes that lifting the emergency will spur economic recovery in Japan, said Hideyuki Ishiguro, senior strategist at Daiwa Securities.

In Tokyo, major shares were higher, with Uniqlo casual wear operator Fast Retailing trading up 1.3 per cent at 53,670 yen, Toyota gaining 1 per cent at 6,354 yen and Sony higher by 0.9 per cent at 6,837 yen.

The dollar fetched 107.73 yen in Asian trade, and 107.56 yen in New York on Friday.

On Friday, US stocks finished mostly higher, with the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index leading major indices, gaining 0.4 per cent to finish at 9,324.59, an increase of more than 3.4 per cent over the week.

The Dow shed less than 0.1 per cent to end at 24,465.16, while the broad-based S&P 500 added 0.2 per cent at 2,955.45.

AFP

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