Japanese stocks rose for the first time in three days on the outlook for orders to rebuild following the country’s worst earthquake, and after a U.S. report showed a decline in unemployment claims.
Comsys Holdings Corp., which designs and constructs phone and power facilities, jumped 5.2 percent, the biggest gain in the Nikkei 225 Stock Average. Ebara Corp., a pump maker, climbed 4.9 percent and Komatsu Ltd., the world’s second-largest manufacturer of construction machinery, advanced 4 percent. Sony Corp., an electronics maker that gets 20 percent of its sales in the U.S., increased 3.8 percent.
The Nikkei 225 rose 0.9 percent to 9,521.70 as of 9:30 a.m. in Tokyo. It fell 8 percent from March 11 to yesterday, the biggest decline among indexes for the world’s largest equity markets, after an earthquake and tsunami that day killed thousands of people, razed homes and factories and crippled the Fukushima nuclear-power station northeast of Tokyo.
“Unless there’s bad news related to nuclear issues, we can expect stocks will be bought back,” said Toshiyuki Kanayama, a market analyst at Tokyo-based Monex Inc. “The U.S. economy is steadily recovering.”
The broader Topix index climbed 0.6 percent to 859.06, with all but one of its 33 industry groups advancing. For this holiday-shortened week, the Topix has risen 3.5 percent, on course for its biggest weekly gain since July, and the Nikkei 225 has increased 3.4 percent.
Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index increased 0.2 percent today. The index advanced 0.9 percent yesterday in New York after corporate profits topped analysts’ estimates and figures from the Labor Department showed jobless claims declined by 5,000 to 382,000 in the week ended March 19, in line with the median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News.
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