Foreigners turn net buyers of Japanese stocks

Dec 19 (Reuters) - Foreign investors turned net buyers of Japanese equities in the week ended Dec. 13 on renewed optimism in the run-up to the Sino-U.S. interim trade deal.

Net buying, including cash equities and futures, was 626.82 billion yen ($5.77 billion) last week, the highest since mid-October, according to data from Japanese stock exchanges.

Overseas investors purchased a net 341.57 billion yen in derivative markets and 285.25 billion yen in cash markets, the data showed.

As of last week, cross-border investors have net purchased about 4.06 trillion yen in Japanese stocks this quarter. They had sold net 1.63 trillion yen worth of Japanese stocks in the last three quarters.

The United States and China cooled their trade war last Friday, announcing a “Phase one” agreement that reduces some U.S. tariffs in exchange for what U.S. officials said would be a big jump in Chinese purchases of American farm products and other goods.

Last week, the Nikkei index and the Topix index both gained over 1.5% and hit their 14-month highs.

Japanese investors bought 220.1 billion yen worth of overseas equities last week, their third successive weekly net buying, Finance Ministry data showed. ($1 = 108.6400 yen)

Reporting by Gaurav Dogra and Patturaja Murugaboopathy; editing by Uttaresh.V