Tokyo stocks soared Tuesday, with the Nikkei index logging its biggest point rise since September 2015 to retake the 18,000-point line, as market sentiment improved after the Bank of Japan's recent purchases of exchange-traded funds as part of its additional monetary easing measures.
Buying of stocks paying high dividends as the business year for many Japanese companies ends next week and the yen's weakness against the U.S. dollar also lifted Tokyo stocks.
The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average ended up 1,204.57 points, or 7.13 percent, from Monday at 18,092.35. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange finished 41.09 points, or 3.18 percent, higher at 1,333.10.
Gainers were led by mining, securities house and marine transportation issues.
Tokyo shares quickly expanded gains after opening and held an upbeat tone for the rest of the day, with buybacks continuing to kick in following the recent sharp declines.
"Shares were bought as investors' need to seek the safety of holding dollars in cash eased somewhat," said Chihiro Ota, general manager of investment research at SMBC Nikko Securities Inc.
In addition, "hopes of buying by the BOJ helped boost investor sentiment," said Toshikazu Horiuchi, equity strategist at IwaiCosmo Securities Co.
The BOJ decided last week to double its purchasing of exchange-traded fund securities to 12 trillion yen ($112 billion) a year as part of the first additional easing measures in three and a half years to battle the new coronavirus outbreak. The bank bought over 200 billion yen worth of ETFs for the second straight trading day through Monday.
Horiuchi added that the Tokyo market also saw retail investors seek shares to secure the right to receive dividends ahead of the end of the fiscal year and institutional investors move to reinvest in stock futures after securing dividends.
Among issues of companies paying relatively large dividends, Japan Airlines climbed 75.50 yen, or 3.9 percent, at 2,027.00 yen, retailer Aeon advanced 79.50 yen, or 3.7 percent, to 2,213.00 yen and securities house Nomura Holdings surged 34.20 yen, or 8.4 percent, to 443.50 yen.
SoftBank Group surged 604 yen, or 19.0 percent, to 3,791 yen, after the company said Monday it will sell up to 4.5 trillion yen ($41 billion) of assets to expand share buybacks and reduce debt in an effort to bolster its share price.
On the First Section, advancing issues outnumbered decliners 1,748 to 394, while 26 ended unchanged.
Trading volume on the main section fell to 2,256.86 million shares from Monday's 2,697.39 million shares.© KYODO