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Japan’s Nikkei Set for Fourth Weekly Gain as Flat Yen Lifts Exporters

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Tokyo Stock Exchange

TOKYO, Nov 24 (Reuters) – Japan’s Nikkei share average climbed towards a three-decade high on Friday, putting the index on course for a fourth weekly gain, as a halt in yen’s rebound buoyed exporters’ stocks.

The Nikkei was up 1.06% at 33,806.93, as of 0204 GMT. The benchmark climbed 0.7% so far this week.

The benchmark index on Monday scaled a post-1990 peak of 33,853.46, before sharply reversing course as investors locked in profit.

About 181 of Nikkei’s 225 components rose on Friday, 42 dropped and two were trading flat.

The broader Topix climbed 0.82%.

The yen traded flat at 149.55 per dollar, hovering around the same level for a third day. The unit strengthened on Tuesday to a more than two-month high of 147.155 as expectations for a more dovish Federal Reserve undercut the U.S. currency.

A weaker yen increases the value of overseas sales when repatriated.

“There were strong expectations for the yen to strengthen to 145 per dollar, but that speculation has come out of the market now,” boosting automakers and other exporters, said Kazuo Kamitani, an equity strategist at Nomura Securities.

“The overheatedness has come out of the market, which means we can expect the Nikkei to set new highs next week – and in fact, there’s a fairly good chance of that happening today.”

Shares of Mazda rallied 3.66% and truck maker Isuzu gained 2.6%, while Toyota rose 2.64%.

Startup investor SoftBank Group added 1.47%, buoyed by a more than 5% rally in one of its key holdings – chip designer ARM.

Japanese chip shares were overall strong, with Tokyo Electron rising 1.67% and Screen Holdings climbing nearly 5%.