TOKYO, Dec 17 Japan's Nikkei share average is
expected to open high on Monday, led by exporters as the yen hit
a 20-month low after the conservative Liberal Democratic Party,
which favours aggressive monetary easing, won Sunday's election
by a landslide.
The Nikkei is likely to trade between 9,700 and
9,900, strategists said, while Nikkei futures in Chicago closed at 9,755 on Friday, down 0.1 percent from the
Osaka close of 9,760.
Foreign brokers put in a net buy orders of 12.9 million
shares, the largest net purchase since Sept. 7
"The yen has weakened further, which is positive for stocks
so there will be some buying," said Kenichi Hirano, operating
officer at Tachibana Securities.
"The LDP's victory likely means more monetary easting, and a
weaker yen, but some of the expectations were already priced in
last week, so there might be some adjustments which will likely
cap gains today."
The yen fell to a 20-month low of 84.48 yen to the dollar on
Monday. A softer yen helps boost Japanese exporters' overseas
earnings when repatriated and improves their competitiveness.
The Nikkei dipped 0.1 percent to 9,737.56 on Friday,
although it was up 2.2 percent for the week, its fifth straight
week of gains. The broader Topix index added 0.2 percent
to 801.04 in the previous session.
The benchmark Nikkei has risen 12.4 percent over the past
4-1/2 weeks, spurred by a weaker yen after Shinzo Abe, the
leader of the LDP which was expected to win the election, called
for the Bank of Japan to undertake bolder policy action,
including embarking on "unlimited easing".
The rally has taken the year-to-date gain for the Nikkei to
15.2 percent, ahead of a 12.4 percent rise in the U.S. S&P 500
and a 14.3 percent gain in the pan-European STOXX Europe
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STOCKS TO WATCH
--ALL NIPPON AIRWAYS
The carrier increased its stake in Starflyer Inc to 18
percent to 0.93 percent, making it the top shareholder in the
small carrier, which the Nikkei newspaper said was a bid to
shore up its earnings base against a revitalised Japan Airlines
Co and other rivals.