TOKYO, Feb 5 (Reuters) - The Nikkei average rose 1.2 percent in a volatile session on Wednesday, rebounding from a four-month low as investors scooped up recently battered stocks such as Panasonic and Toyota Motor following strong earnings reports. The Nikkei ended 171.91 points higher at 14,180.38 after briefly dropping to 13,995.86 in afternoon trade, the lowest intraday level since Oct. 8. Traders cited hedge funds' selling of futures in reaction to the slightly rising yen during Tokyo lunchtime. The Topix gained 2.1 percent to 1,162.64, with all of its 33 subsectors in positive territory. Panasonic Corp jumped 19 percent and was the fourth-most traded stock on the main board after its quarterly earnings more than tripled. Toyota Motor Corp soared 6 percent and was the second-most traded stock after it raised its annual profit forecast to a record level, while Hitachi Ltd gained 4.1 percent after also lifting its guidance. The JPX-Nikkei Index 400, an index launched this year comprised of firms with high return on equity and strong corporate governance, rose 1.9 percent to 10,521.40.