Tokyo stocks rose Tuesday morning, picking up a strong lead from Wall Street which powered to new records, with investor sentiment buoyed by strong US manufacturing data and a weaker yen.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 0.77 percent, or 157.45 points, to 20,558.23 by the lunch break, breaking above the 20,500 level for the first time in more than two years, while the broader Topix index gained 0.45 percent, or 7.52 points, to end the morning at 1,681.14.
Tokyo's rise came as all three main US indices pushed to fresh record highs on Monday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining 0.7 percent to close at 22,557.60, following strong economic data.
US manufacturing activity rose to its highest level in September in 13 years, according to data from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM).
"US ISM figures were pretty good," said Tetsuo Seshimo, a portfolio manager at Saison Asset Management in Tokyo.
"The trend is for Japanese equity gauges to breach recently set highs," he told Bloomberg News, adding that speculation over tighter US monetary policy would weaken the yen against the dollar, a plus for Japanese exporters.
The greenback rose to 113.05 yen on Tuesday from 112.71 yen in New York.
"The row over Catalonian independence as well as the Las Vegas shooting have not led to moves to shun risks -- their impact will be limited," Okasan Online Securities said in a commentary.
Spain has faced a spiralling crisis with its Catalonia region after a banned independence referendum was marred by shocking scenes of police violence.
In the United States, a lone shooter opened fire with multiple weapons on concert-goers on the famed Las Vegas Strip, killing at least 59 people.
In Tokyo, Nissan shares climbed 1.10 percent to 1,096.5 yen as investors shrugged off news late Monday it was recalling some 1.2 million cars in Japan that had failed to meet domestic rules on final vehicle inspections.
Other exporters ranging from automakers to electronics firms also rose on the back of confidence in the US economy and the yen's fall.
Toyota rose 0.50 percent to 6,735 yen and Honda was up 0.89 percent at 3,380 yen.
Camera and copier maker Canon tacked on 1.22 percent to finish the morning at 3,869 yen while Hitachi gained 0.90 percent at 810.5 yen.