Japan Stock Rally Keeps Going as Topix Caps Best Week Since 2009

  • Stimulus optimism helps push Topix up 8.9% this week
  • Line Corp. surges on debut, Fast Retailing and Nintendo jump

How Europe is Influencing Japan's Yen

Japanese shares rose for a fifth day, sending the Topix index to its best weekly gain since 2009, as the yen’s weakness boosted exporters while financial companies led the advance.

The Topix added 0.5 percent to 1,317.10 at the close in Tokyo, capping an 8.9 percent increase this week, its biggest such advance since Dec. 4, 2009. The Nikkei 225 Stock Average climbed 0.7 percent. The yen traded at 105.82 per dollar, poised for its worst week since 1999 after sliding 0.8 percent on Thursday. The stock market is closed on Monday in Japan for a public holiday.

“The punters are back, and people are making money again,” said Benjamin Collett, Hong Kong-based head of Asian equities at Sunrise Brokers. “They’re very optimistic about the yen weakening and for more monetary expansion and stimulus.”

Japanese shares have been buoyed this week after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s win in the upper-house elections on Sunday raised optimism the government will act to boost growth. Speculation officials are considering so-called helicopter money swirled even amid government denials, as investors await the Bank of Japan’s meeting at the end of this month. The Topix followed global equities this week in recouping losses from Britain’s vote to leave the European Union on June 23.

Insurers and brokerage firms led gains among the 33 Topix industry groups while agricultural shares and food makers slid.

  • Line Corp. traded 32 percent above its initial public offer price in Tokyo after surging 27 percent in its U.S. debut for the biggest technology IPO of the year.
  • Fast Retailing Co. jumped 18 percent, the most since 1998, after the operator of the Uniqlo brand stores posted third-quarter profit that beat estimates.
  • Nintendo Co. added 9.8 percent, its biggest weekly gain since its listing in 1983, as the popularity of its newly launched Pokemon Go mobile game sent shares soaring this week. The value of shares traded in the stock surged to 476 billion yen ($4.5 billion) on Friday, the highest daily turnover for any company on the Topix this century.

Futures on the S&P 500 Index slid 0.2 percent. The underlying equity gauge eked out a third straight closing record, as a let-up in political turmoil in the U.K. kept demand for risk assets alive.

“Fears over the fallout from Brexit have been alleviated thanks to stimulus measures across the world,” said Juichi Wako, senior strategist for Nomura Holdings Inc. in Tokyo.

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