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Tokyo stocks close higher for fourth consecutive day

Tokyo stocks rose for a fourth straight day Wednesday, helped by a cheaper yen and rallies on Wall Street with a continued focus on developments in the US-China talks.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index edged up 0.28 percent or 64.45 points to close at 23,437.77, while the broader Topix index climbed 0.31 percent or 5.27 points to end at 1,710.98.

"Japanese shares are supported by record highs in US shares and by the dollar-yen rate hovering around the 109.00-50 yen levels," said Yoshihiro Ito, chief strategist at Okasan Online Securities.

But some investors sold shares to take profit ahead of a US market holiday for Thanksgiving on Thursday, Mizuho Securities said in a note.

"US-China trade news... (is) still dominating headlines, but markets are becoming desensitised amid a lack of concrete... news," said Rodrigo Catril, senior strategist at National Australia Bank.

The dollar fetched 109.15 yen in early Asian trade, against 109.04 yen in New York and 109.00 yen in Tokyo on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, Chinese Vice Premier Liu He spoke by phone to US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, state media said.

The two sides "discussed solving issues regarding each other's core concerns, reached consensus on properly resolving related issues, and agreed to maintain communication on remaining issues in consultations on the 'phase one' deal", China's official Xinhua news agency said, without providing more details.

US President Donald Trump also suggested there was progress, saying "we're in the final throes of a very important deal".

In Tokyo, steelmaker JFE Holdings ended up 0.71 percent at 1,386 yen and electric furnace steel specialist Tokyo Steel advanced 0.48 percent to 835 yen, but Nippon Steel, which earlier traded in positive territory, ended down 0.21 percent at 1,614 yen.

Electronics were mostly higher, with Fujitsu rallying 2.27 percent to 10,025 yen, TDK climbing 1.11 percent to 11,780 yen and Sharp ending up 1.67 percent at 1,701 yen.