September 24, 2019 / 6:47 AM / 21 days ago

Japanese shares rise on trade hopes, Topix at 5-month high

TOKYO, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Japanese shares rose on Tuesday, buoyed by optimism that high-level U.S.-China trade talks will take place early next month and investors bought ahead of companies going ex-dividend later in the week.

The benchmark Nikkei average edged 0.1% higher to close at 22,098.84 points, while the broader Topix advanced 0.4% to 1,622.94, its highest closing since April 23.

U.S. stock futures rose 0.3%, helped by comments from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin that U.S.-China trade talks will take place in two weeks.

“While the Nikkei was fairly well supported, we need more catalysts for further rises,” said Takeo Kamai, head of execution service at CLSA Securities Japan.

“Although speculators have reacted to the trade-related headlines, real-money people appear to be staying on the sidelines.”

Analysts said speculative traders bought the Topix and Nikkei futures to get ahead of a wave of expected buying - estimated to be 700 billion yen ($6.5 billion) in total - later this week by passive investors who will be reinvesting dividends.

However, a slowing global economy remained a headache for financial markets, as poor business activity readings from the euro zone deepened fears of a recession and suggested more stimulus was required.

Mining and sea transport were the worst performing sectors among the Tokyo bourse’s 33 subsector indexes, down 1.8% and 1.6%, respectively.

Other notable movers include Oriental Land, which jumped 3.0% after the Tokyo Disney Resort operator announced it would raise theme park admission fees from Oct. 1.

Mitsubishi Corp dropped 0.6% after the country’s biggest trading house said a trader at its Singapore-based unit had lost $320 million through unauthorised transactions in crude oil derivatives.

Elsewhere, Nissan Motor slipped 1.0% after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commision said the carmaker and its former chief executive Carlos Ghosn have agreed to settle the illicit compensation claims from the regulator. Nissan will pay $15 million, while Ghosn agreed to a $1 million civil penalty and a 10-year ban from serving as an officer or director of a publicly traded U.S. company, the SEC said. ($1 = 107.5300 yen) (Additional reporting by Hideyuki Sano; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)

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