Japan’s Nikkei Ends Higher as Chip Shares Track Wall Street Gains

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Tokyo Stock Exchange

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Nikkei share average rose for a third straight session on Wednesday, as Advantest and other chip-related stocks tracked overnight Wall Street gains.

The Nikkei rose 0.25% to close at 32,926.35, while the broader Topix inched up 0.07% at 2,354.92.

“The Japanese market was lifted by the momentum of Wall Street, with the Dow on course to mark a record high,” said Shigetoshi Kamada, general manager at the research department at Tachibana Securities.

“Investors wanted to buy more to boost the Nikkei but caution ahead of the Federal Reserve policy decision capped appetite.”

U.S. stocks closed at fresh highs of the year on Tuesday, after inflation data did little to alter views for the timing of a rate cut by the Fed, as investors awaited the central bank’s last policy decision of the year on Wednesday.

Fed officials are expected to give updated economic and interest rate projections later in the day, following a meeting where markets expect rates to stay on hold.

Chip-making equipment maker Advantest jumped 5.19%, while chip maker Renesas Electronics climbed 3.75%. Chip-testing making equipment maker Tokyo Electron rose 4.71%.

Ushio surged 12.27% after the maker of LED chips said it would team up with Applied Materials to develop technology for the advanced semiconductor packaging market.

Computer maker Fujitsu fell 3.66%, weighing on the Topix the most, after state-backed Japan Investment Corp (JIC) said it would join Dai Nippon Printing and Mitsui Chemicals to buy out Shinko Electric Industries, Fujitsu’s chip-packaging unit. Shinko fell 1.23%.

Of the 225 components on the benchmark Nikkei, 149 stocks fell, 75f rose and one was flat.