October 19, 2017 / 1:36 AM / 2 months ago

Nikkei rises on global stock rally, heads for 13 straight days of gains

* Nikkei on track for longest daily winning streak since 1988

* Financial stocks, exporters gain ground

By Ayai Tomisawa

TOKYO, Oct 19 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average rose on Thursday morning to hit a fresh 21-year high and was poised to scale a 13-day winning streak, as gains in global stocks and a weaker yen supported investors’ risk sentiment.

The Nikkei rose 0.3 percent to 21,430.66 in midmorning trade, after rising to as much as 21,464.82, the highest level since 1996. If it ends in positive territory, it will have posted 13 straight days of gains, the longest winning streak since 1988.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 23,000 for the first time on Wednesday, driven by a jump in IBM after it hinted at a return to revenue growth.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged up 0.05 percent, nearing a 10-year peak scaled on Tuesday.

“Foreign investors’ risk sentiment is rising backed by strength in global shares. They are seen buying Japanese stocks aggressively for the past two weeks,” said Mutsumi Kagawa, chief global strategist at Rakuten Securities.

Kagawa said that expectations that the ruling bloc will win the election this weekend also continues to buoy the mood.

The dollar was steady at 112.930 yen after rising 0.6 percent overnight, lifting exporters. Tokyo Electron Ltd surged 1.0 percent, Panasonic Corp gained 0.9 percent and Honda Motor Co rose 0.7 percent.

Financial stocks also gained ground, with insurers Dai-ichi Life Holdings soaring 1.5 percent, T&D Holdings adding 0.8 percent and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group climbing 1.3 percent.

Meanwhile CME Group and Japan Exchange Group, the operator of the Tokyo Stock Exchange, announced the launch of yen-denominated Topix futures contracts to begin trading on CME Globex in April 2018.

The broader Topix gained 0.4 percent to 1,730.83. (Editing by Sam Holmes)

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