Tokyo stocks open higher after lifting emergency

Japan: Tokyo stocks open higher after lifting state of emergency

(Representative image/ AP/PTI)

Tokyo stocks opened higher on Tuesday after Japan lifted a nationwide state of emergency over the coronavirus, gradually reopening the world's third-largest economy.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index was up 0.86 percent, or 177.91 points, at 20,919.56 in early trade, while the broader Topix index edged up 0.67 percent, or 10.03 points, to 1,512.23.

Read: COVID-19 Pandemic Tracker: 15 countries with the highest number of coronavirus cases, deaths

"The lifting of state of emergency is supporting the Japanese market" amid a lack of clues from US and British markets which were closed for public holidays, Okasan Online Securities chief strategist Yoshihiro Ito said in a commentary.

Japan lifted a nationwide state of emergency late Monday over the coronavirus but government officials warned caution was still necessary to prevent another wave.

Compared with hard-hit areas in Europe, the United States, Russia and Brazil, Japan has been spared the worst of the pandemic, with around 16,600 infections and 830 deaths.

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But on April 7, with cases beginning to spike and fears for the country's health system, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe declared a state of emergency for Tokyo and six other regions -- later expanding it to cover the entire nation.

The emergency was lifted for much of the country last week, but the government opted to wait before removing the measures in the capital and surrounding areas, as well as hard-hit northern Hokkaido.

Tokyo shares were broadly higher, with Honda rallying 2.30 percent to 2,690.5 yen, Tokyo Disney Resort operator Oriental Land gaining 1.28 percent to 15,770 yen, and East Japan Railway trading up 1.37 percent at 8,343 yen.

The dollar was quoted at 107.68 yen in early Asian trade, against 107.72 yen in late Tokyo hours on Monday.

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