Tokyo stocks put on 1.41%

Tokyo stocks closed 1.41 percent higher on Tuesday, as a weak yen helped boost the market which surged last week following a return to power for the country's conservatives.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index gained 140.06 points to 10,080.12, while the broader Topix index of all first-section shares added 0.64 percent, or 5.29 points, to finish at 838.01.

A strong yen is negative for Japanese markets as it erodes exporters' revenue and makes their products less competitive overseas.

The yen had dipped against the dollar and the euro on Monday after Japan's incoming prime minister Shinzo Abe, whose Liberal Democratic Party won a landslide national election this month, renewed calls on the Bank of Japan to take further steps to ease monetary policy.

Abe at the weekend threatened to change a law guaranteeing the bank's independence if it did not agree to set a two-percent inflation target.

He is pressing the bank to set the goal in a bid to drag the country out of the deflation that has haunted its economy for years.

Japanese markets were closed Monday for a holiday.

In forex trading, the dollar stood at 84.75 yen, slightly lower than 84.82 yen in New York on Monday, where the greenback had climbed to the 85 yen level, last seen in April 2011.

The euro fetched 111.75 yen and $1.3181 from 111.87 yen and $1.3183 in US trade.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended a shortened Christmas Eve session Monday down 0.39 percent at 13,139.08 amid pessimism about prospects of a deal to avert the US "fiscal cliff" due to take effect in January.

"The fact that the discussions apparently remain bogged down is a negative, but the overarching factor for stocks -- a cheaper yen -- trumps everything else," said Hiroichi Nishi, general manager of equities at SMBC Nikko Securities in Tokyo.

Divided US lawmakers have until the end of the year to reach a deal to avert the fiscal cliff, a combination of steep tax hikes and spending cuts which threatens to drag the world's largest economy into recession.

In Tokyo, Mitsubishi Motors gained 1.23 percent to 82 yen, despite transport officials inspecting the automaker's offices across Japan on Tuesday after it widened a vehicle recall to about 1.7 million vehicles.

Sharp dived 7.45 percent to 273 yen, a fall sparked by profit-taking after the stock's recent rally.

Most Asian markets were closed for public holidays, but those that were open tracked the gains in Tokyo.

Chinese shares put on 2.53 percent, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index jumping 54.56 points to close at a nearly six-month high of 2,213.61.

Industrial Bank gained 5.89 percent to 16.36 yuan, while property developer Gemdale jumped 5.61 percent to 6.40 yuan.

Taiwan's weighted index rose 1.34 percent, or 101.05 points, to 7,636.57.

Leading smartphone maker HTC rose 1.99 percent to Tw$282.5 while Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. was 1.37 percent higher at Tw$96.5.

Bangkok gained 0.18 percent, or 2.50 points, to 1,378.32.

Coal producer Banpu dropped 0.48 percent to 416.00 baht, while electricity firm EGCO added 0.70 percent to 143.00 baht.

-- Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this story --

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Market Data

  • Currencies
    Currencies
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    1.2581+0.0026+0.21%
    USDSGD=X
    1.7395+0.0048+0.28%
    EURSGD=X
    2.1138+0.0072+0.34%
    GBPSGD=X
    81.3466-0.3272-0.40%
    SGDJPY=X
    6.1625-0.0131-0.21%
    SGDHKD=X
    2.5987-0.0024-0.09%
    SGDMYR=X
    9,257.1250-42.5596-0.46%
    SGDIDR=X
    4.9675-0.0012-0.02%
    SGDCNY=X
    1.1648-0.0011-0.09%
    AUDSGD=X
  • Commodities
    Commodities
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    1,291.50+6.90+0.54%
    GCM14.CMX
    19.68+0.25+1.27%
    SIK14.CMX
    91.73-1.15-1.24%
    ^XAU
    3.12+0.06+1.90%
    HGK14.CMX
    101.91+0.47+0.46%
    CLM14.NYM
  • Bonds
    Bonds
    TreasuryYield (%)Yield Change
    1.74+0.03
    ^FVX
    2.690.00
    ^TNX
    3.460.00
    ^TYX

MARKET MOVERS

  • Most Actives
    Most Actives
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    0.123+0.001+0.82%
    B22.SI
    0.15+0.008+5.63%
    545.SI
    0.635+0.040+6.72%
    5WH.SI
    0.615+0.005+0.82%
    E5H.SI
    1.355+0.005+0.37%
    G13.SI
  • % Gainers
    % Gainers
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    20.00+4.200+26.58%
    K6S.SI
    1.215+0.190+18.54%
    S53.SI
    0.415+0.045+12.16%
    570.SI
    1.345+0.130+10.70%
    5DA.SI
    0.154+0.014+10.00%
    5GD.SI
  • % Losers
    % Losers
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    0.053-0.059-52.68%
    5TF.SI
    1.62-0.520-24.30%
    N02.SI
    0.20-0.020-9.09%
    E94.SI
    0.179-0.013-6.77%
    567.SI
    0.30-0.020-6.25%
    508.SI