Nikkei inches up in light trade, yen weighs

TOKYO, Oct 26 (BestGrowthStock) – Japan’s Nikkei inched up Tuesday
afternoon, helped by what some analysts said was buying of
futures and short-covering as well as rises in resource-linked
stocks after commodities rallied on a slide in the dollar.

Still, the Nikkei remained stuck in a narrow range with
traders hesitant to take fresh long positions after the yen
firmed to a fresh 15-year peak of 80.41 (JPY=: ) against the dollar
on Monday, approaching a record high of 79.75 yen.

“The market gained ground slightly, helped by buying of
Nikkei futures in the early afternoon, though the currency
markets have been stable and it’s not as if we’ve had any big
news,” said Masayuki Otani, chief market analyst at Securities
Japan, Inc.

“The market was rangebound and trade was light, and that’s
why a move towards one direction tends to get exaggerated.”

Shares of Sony Corp (6758.T: ) rose nearly 3 percent in the
afternoon before losing steam as traders cited media reports
speculating that the Japanese electronics maker could be a
potential acquisition target of Apple Inc (Read more about Apple stock future.) (AAPL.O: ).

The benchmark Nikkei (.N225: ) rose 0.3 percent to 9,424.34,
erasing earlier small losses, while the broader Topix (.TOPX: ) was
almost unchanged at 821.38.

The strength in the yen, which eats into exporters’ earnings,
added to investor caution ahead of the peak of the corporate
earnings season.

A slew of major companies report earnings this week,
including Canon Inc (7751.T: ) on Wednesday and Sony on Friday.

Resource stocks gained after commodities surged on Monday as
the dollar tumbled on market perceptions that the Group of 20
countries at their weekend meeting did not agree on concrete
steps to stop competitive currency devaluations.

Inpex Corp (1605.T: ), Japan’s top oil explorer, rose 0.9
percent to 438,000 yen and Toho Zinc (5707.T: ) rose 3.1 percent to
364 yen.
(Reporting by Aiko Hayashi; Editing by Chris Gallagher)

Nikkei inches up in light trade, yen weighs