October 29, 2019 / 2:23 AM / a month ago

Japanese stocks extend rally on U.S.-China trade deal hopes

TOKYO, Oct 29 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei index rose to the highest in more than a year on Tuesday as optimism that the United States and China can scale back their bruising trade war buoyed hopes for higher corporate earnings.

By 0145 GMT, the Nikkei benchmark share average was up 0.48% at 22,977.95. It earlier rose to 23,008.43, the highest since Oct. 11, 2018. So far it is up 14.25% for the year.

Investors flocked to riskier assets after U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday he expected to sign a significant part of the trade deal with China ahead of schedule but did not elaborate on the timing.

Leaders of the world’s two biggest economies are working to agree on the text for a “Phase 1” trade agreement announced by Trump on Oct. 11. Trump has said he hopes to sign the deal with China’s President Xi Jinping next month at a summit in Chile.

Japanese stocks rose for a seventh consecutive trading session as investors bought shares of materials makers that export overseas. Shares in the consumer discretionary sector also rose.

There were 184 advancers on the Nikkei index against 35 decliners on Tuesday.

The largest percentage gainers in the index were Nitto Denko Corp, a maker of materials for chips and automotive products, which rose 5.24%, followed by Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co Ltd, up 3.59%, and Mazda Motor Corp up 3.24%.

The largest percentage losses in the index were healthcare services firm M3 Inc, down 3.93%, followed by semiconductor equipment maker Advantest Corp, down 2.44%, and pharmaceutical company Eisai Co Ltd, which fell 2.02%.

The broader Topix index rose 0.95% to 1,664.06, reaching its highest level since Dec. 4, 2018.

The volume of shares traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s main board was 0.56 billion, compared to the average of 1.24 billion in the past 30 days. (Reporting by Stanley White; editing by Richard Pullin)

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