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Nikkei gains as hospitality shares jump, stay-home winners lose footing

TOKYO, Nov 10 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average rallied to a 29-year high on Tuesday as battered airlines, railway and department store operator shares jumped on news of progress in the development a COVID-19 vaccine.

Investors switched to beaten-down value shares while dumping those which benefited from the stay-at-home trend during the pandemic, such as internet service firms and game companies.

The Nikkei rose 1.17% to 25,131.71, hitting its best level since June 1991 and rising for a sixth straight session. The broader Topix gained 1.62% to 1,709.06.

Airliner ANA Holdings jumped 16.9%, while the country’s three big railway operators — East Japan Railway , West Japan Railway and Central Japan Railway — all vaulted more than 10%.

Department store chain J.Front Retailing gained 10.7%, while rival Isetan Mitsukoshi soared 8.9%.

Pfizer and German partner BioNTech SE said its experimental COVID-19 vaccine was more than 90% effective based on initial trial results.

Topix value rose 2.8% as insurers and banks benefited from surge in U.S. bond yields while other “old economy” shares, such as steelmakers, gained on hopes of a broader recovery in the economy.

“Perhaps markets were preoccupied with U.S. elections a bit too much. Some investors who had increased cash holdings due to uncertainties over the U.S. elections are now coming back as they see a real chance of a recovery in corporate earnings,” said Takatoshi Itoshima, strategist at Pictet Asset Management.

Internet service firms and game companies, with their valuation stretched after concentration of investors’ funds, fell out of favour.

Bandai Namco Holding dropped 5.7%, while Nintendo lost 5%. Internet firm Z Holdings shed 3.9% while medical service platform operator M3, one of the market’s best performers this year, dropped 3.5%.

Mothers start-up shares, another high-flyer this year, fell 4.1%. (Editing by Uttaresh.V)