TOKYO, Sept 2 (Reuters) - Japanese shares rose on Wednesday
after positive data on the U.S. manufacturing sector spurred
hopes that a global economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic
remains on track.
The Nikkei 225 Index ended up 0.47% at 23,247.15,
while the broader Topix index also rose 0.47% to
Stocks also got a boost after Chief Cabinet Secretary
Yoshihide Suga emerged as the leading candidate to replace
outgoing Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at a leadership election on
If Suga becomes the new prime minister, this would suggest
few major changes to economic policy and lesser chances of
political instability, which are positives for equities,
"Some investors were bracing for disappointing U.S.
manufacturing data, but the results were quite the opposite, and
that is pushing up the stock market," said Kiyoshi Ishigane,
chief fund manager at Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management
"There is also a bit of relief as Suga is gathering support
to be the next prime minister."
The stocks that gained the most among the top 30 core Topix
names were electronic parts makers Murata Manufacturing Co Ltd
, up 3.83%, and Keyence Corp, which gained
Japan's capital goods sector got a boost after the Institute
for Supply Management said on Tuesday that U.S. manufacturing
activity accelerated to a nearly two-year high in August.
Stocks were also supported by hopes for progress in talks on
additional U.S. fiscal stimulus.
The underperformers among the Topix 30 were drugmaker
Astellas Pharma Inc down 1.8%, followed by car maker
Honda Motor losing 1.2%.
There were 102 advancers on the Nikkei index against 113
The volume of shares traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange's
main board was 0.98 billion, compared to the average of
1.16 billion in the past 30 days.
(Reporting by Stanley White; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel and