November 6, 2019 / 3:07 AM / 16 days ago

Nikkei inches up to 13-mth high on U.S.-China trade hopes, weaker yen

TOKYO, Nov 6 (Reuters) - Japan’s benchmark Nikkei share average edged up to a fresh 13-month high on Wednesday as hopes for a U.S.-China trade deal, a weaker yen and rising bond yields buoyed exporters and financials.

The Nikkei average rose 0.1% to 23,263.83 points by the midday break, after hitting an intra-day high earlier of 23,352.56, its strongest level since Oct. 10 last year.

The broader Topix retreated 0.3% to 1,689.98, after rising to as high as 1,701.35, its intra-day high in more than a year, as profit taking kicked in.

Overnight, U.S. 10-year Treasury yield climbed as high as its six week peak of 1.873% and Germany’s 20-year yield rose into positive territory for the first time in 3-1/2 months on optimism that the United States and China will scale back a bruising trade war.

On Wednesday, the dollar held the upper hand against its rivals, particularly versus safe-haven yen, with the pair last trading at 109.08 yen, not far from its October high, providing a boost for Japanese exporters as a weak yen enhances corporate profits when they are repatriated.

Export-oriented Mitsubishi Motor advanced 1.7%, Kyocera gained 1.4% and Hitachi rose 1.3%.

The interest rate-sensitive financial sector also outperformed, with T&D Holdings jumping 3.5%, Dai-ichi Life Holdings and Mitsubishi UGJ Financial Group also adding 0.6% each.

Elsewhere, Asahi Group Holdings dived 6.0% after the brewer lowered its forecast for full-year operating profit and year-end dividend, citing unfavourable weather and currency moves. (Reporting By Tomo Uetake; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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