April 18, 2018 / 2:01 AM / 2 years ago

REFILE-Nikkei gains to 7-week high as earnings hopes buoy Wall Street

(Corrects to say that Fast Retailing rallied 1.9 percent, in the 4th paragraph)

TOKYO, April 18 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average raced to a seven-week high on Wednesday morning as risk sentiment recovered after Wall Street rose overnight on earnings hopes, lifting shares across the board.

Also helping the mood was easing political tensions on the Korean peninsula after a senior U.S. official said CIA Director Mike Pompeo made a secret visit to North Korea over the Easter weekend and met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The Nikkei rose 1.2 percent to 22,109.48 in midmorning trade, after hitting a high of 22,136.21, its strongest level since Feb. 28.

Index-heavy stocks such as Fast Retailing Co and Fanuc rallied 1.9 percent and 2.6 percent, respectively, while exporters advanced as well. Advantest rose 3.1 percent, TDK Corp jumped 4 percent and Panasonic Corp advanced 1.7 percent.

The broader Topix gained 0.8 percent to 1,744.43.

Editing by Shri Navaratnam

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