June 7, 2018 / 7:07 AM / a year ago

Nikkei rises helped by metal stocks; Shiseido jumps

TOKYO, June 7 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average rose to more than two-week highs on Thursday to stay above a key technical level as it tracked Wall Street gains overnight, while non-ferrous metal stocks staged a rally after copper prices soared.

Cosmetics maker Shiseido Co was under the spotlight after it jumped 5.6 percent and was the fourth biggest gainer by turnover after Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities upgraded its rating to ‘overweight’ from ‘neutral’, citing strong inbound tourism demand in Japanese cosmetics.

The Nikkei gained 0.9 percent to 22,823.26, the highest closing price since May 22, and it comfortably sat above its 25-day moving average of 22,580.76.

U.S. stocks rallied overnight boosted by financial stocks as investors eyed strong economic data, while the Nasdaq posted its third straight record closing high.

Meanwhile, analysts said that investors are focused on Friday’s settlement of Nikkei futures and options contracts expiring in June.

“The market is focused on whether the Nikkei futures and options will settle above 23,000... it looks positive as the Nikkei has traded above a key technical line,” said Yutaka Miura, a senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities.

“If they settle above that level, the next resistance will likely be at 23,200.”

The nonferrous metal sector surged 1.6 percent after copper hit a 3-1/2-month high on Wednesday as concerns lingered over possible supply disruptions in Chile.

Sumitomo Metal Mining surged 4.0 percent, Mitsui Mining & Smelting soared 1.2 percent.

Copper has risen nearly 4 percent this week after the union at BHP’s, Escondida mine in Chile, the world’s largest, said on Friday it had started the latest round of wage negotiations.

Other winners included tech shares such as high-purity silicon maker Sumco Corp adding 1.5 percent, and TDK Corp surging 2.1 percent.

On the flip side, mining stocks weakened after oil prices fell on Wednesday on worries that global supply is climbing, before shaking off some of the losses during Asian trade.

Inpex Corp fell 0.7 percent, while Japan Petroleum Exploration Co declined 1.1 percent.

The broader Topix advanced 0.6 percent to 1,789.01. (Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier)

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