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Nikkei rises over 2% in morning following 2-day sell-off

This file photo shows the Tokyo Stock Exchange. (Mainichi)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Tokyo stocks bounced back Thursday morning, with the Nikkei index advancing over 2 percent thanks to dip-buying after a 4 percent plunge over the past two days and strong performances from chip stocks responding to positive earnings from their overseas peers.

    The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average rose 591.38 points, or 2.07 percent, from Wednesday to 29,099.93. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was up 34.25 points, or 1.81 percent, at 1,922.43.

    Gainers were led by marine transportation, precision instrument, and iron and steel issues.

    The U.S. dollar was stuck around the 108 yen line, weighed down by concerns about Japan's plan to reintroduce COVID-19 emergency measures in urban areas and its negative effect on business activities.

    At noon, the dollar fetched 108.00-01 yen compared with 107.99-108.09 yen in New York and 108.22-24 yen in Tokyo at 5 p.m. Wednesday.

    The euro was quoted at $1.2046-2050 and 130.09-16 yen against $1.2030-2040 and 130.01-11 yen in New York and $1.2010-2012 and 129.98-130.02 yen in Tokyo late Wednesday afternoon.

    Shares were higher from the opening and gradually extended their gains after the Nikkei index tumbled over 1,100 points, or 4 percent, on Tuesday and Wednesday, when it ended at a one-month low below the 29,000 line on the virus emergency fears.

    "Stocks bounced back as they fell too much during the previous two days and semiconductor issues supported the market" after U.S. and Dutch chip makers reported bullish earnings Wednesday, said Kazuo Kamitani, a strategist in the Investment Content Department of Nomura Securities Co.

    Focus is shifting to earnings results from domestic companies, with earnings forecasts for the year from April expected to beat analysts' expectations, Kamitani added.

    On the First Section, advancing issues outnumbered decliners 1,991 to 148, while 47 ended the morning unchanged.

    Among semiconductor equipment makers, Screen Holdings soared 440 yen, or 4.3 percent, to 10,590 yen, Tokyo Electron climbed 2,030 yen, or 4.3 percent, to 49,460 yen, and Advantest grew 300 yen, or 3.0 percent, to 10,310 yen.

    SoftBank Group gained 193 yen, or 1.9 percent, to 10,115 yen following a news report that the investment and technology conglomerate reportedly plans to report record earnings next month, helped by an increase in the stock valuation of its tech-company investments.

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