The Japanese stock exchange started the new trading week with a small profit on Monday. Advances in the spread of the corona vaccine gave investors courage.
A positive Tankan report from the Bank of Japan, showing that the confidence of major Japanese companies has improved at the fastest pace in nearly two decades, also provided support for trade. The sharp upsurge in the number of corona infections in Japan and fears of stricter measures to contain the virus outbreak kept price gains limited.
The main index in Tokyo, the Nikkei 225, ended 0.3 percent in the plus at 26,732.44 points. According to the Japanese central bank, the mood among large companies was minus 10 this quarter, compared to minus 27 in the previous quarter. Business confidence thus improved for the second quarter in a row.
The figure was also higher than economists had expected. Automaker Toyota gained almost 2 percent, partly thanks to solid Chinese car sales in November. Computer game maker Nintendo continued to benefit from the stricter corona measures and gained more than 3 percent.
The other major stock exchanges in the Asian region showed a mixed picture. The stock market gauge in Shanghai was 0.3 percent higher in the meantime, and the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong lost 0.6 percent. Seoul’s Kospi fell 0.2 percent after a record increase in corona cases in South Korea. The Australian All Ordinaries in Sydney climbed 0.3 percent.