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Japanese Market Rises

(RTTNews) - The Japanese stock market is rising on Monday and the safe-haven yen weakened after investor sentiment bolstered by the positive cues from Wall Street Friday as well as news that the U.S. and China are nearing a trade deal.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is adding 152.03 points or 0.70 percent to 21,754.72, off a high of 21,816.74 earlier. Japanese shares rose sharply on Friday to hit two-and-a-half month highs.

The major exporters are mixed despite a weaker yen. Mitsubishi Electric is advancing more than 1 percent and Sony is up 0.3 percent, while Canon is lower 0.6 percent and Panasonic is declining 0.3 percent.

In the tech sector, Advantest is rising more than 3 percent and Tokyo Electron is advancing almost 2 percent.

Among the major automakers, Honda is declining more than 1 percent and Toyota is down almost 1 percent. In the banking space, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is adding 0.2 percent and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is edging up 0.1 percent.

In the oil space, Inpex is advancing almost 1 percent and Japan Petroleum is rising more than 2 percent even as crude oil prices fell on Friday.

On the economic front, the Bank of Japan said that the monetary base in Japan was up 4.6 percent on year in February, coming in at 493.098 trillion yen. That was down from the 4.7 percent gain in January.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the upper 111 yen-range on Monday.

On Wall Street, stocks closed higher on Friday amid optimism about U.S.-China trade talks following upbeat comments from White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow. traders largely shrugged off some disappointing economic data, including a report from the Institute for Supply Management showing growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector slowed by much more than anticipated in February.

The Dow rose 110.32 points or 0.4 percent to 26,026.32, the Nasdaq advanced 62.82 points or 0.8 percent to 7,595.35 and the S&P 500 climbed 19.20 points or 0.7 percent to 2,803.69.

The major European markets also moved to the upside on Friday. While the German DAX Index advanced by 0.8 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index both rose by 0.5 percent.

Crude oil prices drifted lower on Friday as worries about demand growth resurfaced after data showed a drop in manufacturing activity in the U.S. and a decline in consumer sentiment. WTI crude for April delivery plunged $1.42 or 2.5 percent to close at $55.80 a barrel.
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