Tokyo stocks open higher on US-China trade rumours

Tokyo stocks opened higher on Friday, tracking gains on Wall Street as investors took heart from a report the US could lift trade tariffs on China.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 0.27% to 20 456.83 in early trade while the broader Topix index was up 0.27% at 1 547.35.

"Following gains in US shares, Japanese shares are seen trading positively" in early hours, Toshiyuki Kanayama, senior market analyst at Monex said in a commentary.

A weaker yen against the dollar is also supporting Japanese shares, analysts said.

The dollar fetched ¥109.26 in early Asian trade, against ¥109.19 in New York late on Thursday.

US stocks suddenly jumped higher after The Wall Street Journal reported Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had proposed lifting some or all tariffs on China as a way to reassure markets and bolster the odds of a bigger trade deal.

In individual Tokyo trade, electronics firms were higher, with Panasonic up 0.47% at ¥1 050 and Sharp higher by 0.81% at ¥1 116.

However, precision motor maker Nidec dropped 4.92% to 11 785 after it said its net profit for the year to March would be 14% lower than the previous year.

Hitachi edged up 0.14% to ¥3 487 after it froze construction of a nuclear power station in Wales in Britain, booking a cost of ¥300bn.

On Wall Street, the Dow ended up 0.7% at 24 370.10.

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