November 8, 2017 / 7:05 AM / a year ago

Japan's Topix index hits near 11-year high on strong earnings hopes

TOKYO, Nov 8 (Reuters) - Japan’s Topix index hit a near 11-year high on Wednesday as foreign investors continued to pile in on strong earnings hopes for Japan Inc., though the Nikkei edged down from a near 26-year high on profit-taking.

Financial stocks stumbled on profit-taking with index-heavy stocks such as Nitto Denko slipping 2.5 percent and Fast Retailing shedding 0.6 percent.

The Nikkei ended 0.1 percent lower to 22,913.82, though remained near 22,953.18 hit on Tuesday, its highest level since January 1992.

The broader Topix rose 0.2 percent to 1,817.60, the highest closing level since February 2007, with traders citing foreign investors’ ongoing appetite in companies with strong earnings hopes.

Exporters such as Sony Corp and Panasonic Corp soared 2.8 percent and 2.0 percent, respectively, while Toyota Motor Corp advanced 1.0 percent. Toyota raised its annual operating profit forecast to 2.0 trillion yen from 1.85 trillion yen and also said it will buy back 1.5 percent of its own shares, worth 250 billion yen. Insurers and banks lost ground, with T&D Holdings declining 2.1 percent, MS&AD Insurance dropping 0.6 percent and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group falling 0.9 percent. (Reporting by Ayai Tomisawa; Editing by Sam Holmes)

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