Tokyo stocks open higher on bargain-hunting

TOKYO, Japan (AFP) — Tokyo stocks opened higher on Wednesday in cautious trade as investors hunted for bargains with a lack of fresh events to support the market after slides in US shares.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index edged up 0.23 percent, or 49.79 points, to 21,499.18 in early trade, while the broader Topix index was up 0.15 percent, or 2.41 points, at 1,619.61.

“As the Japanese market fell yesterday ahead of the slides in US shares, today’s market is led by buy-orders,” Toshiyuki Kanayama, senior market analyst at Monex, said in a note.

With “a lack of fresh material to encourage purchases, the focus is (on) whether the Nikkei index will keep sound movement throughout the day,” he said.

Wall Street stocks finished a choppy session slightly lower Tuesday after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell reiterated a dovish approach to further interest rate hikes.

In Asia-Pacific hours on Wednesday, the dollar fetched 110.55 yen, against 110.58 yen in New York.

With the external environment calm, “it is a good opportunity to buy shares with good performances,” Okasan Online Securities said in a commentary.

In Tokyo, marine transport firms were among winners, with Nippon Yusen gaining 0.78 percent to 1,793 yen and its rival Mitsui O.S.K. Lines trading up 0.90 percent at 2,664 yen.

Sony was up 0.80 percent at 5,374 yen and Panasonic rose 0.33 percent to 1,040 yen.

On Wall Street, the Dow ended down 0.1 percent at 26,057.98.

© Agence France-Presse