Japanese shares edge up as banks gain amid easing crisis fear

| Tue, 28 Mar 2023 03:01:43 GMT

TOKYO, March 28 (Reuters) – Japanese shares traded higher on Tuesday, lifted by banking shares after U.S. lender First Citizens BancShares’s acquisition of the assets of failed peer Silicon Valley Bank eased worries about the global financial system.

The Nikkei inched up 0.07% to 27,497.45 by the midday break, while the broader Topix edged up 0.3% to 1,967.76.

“Bank stocks lifted the market today, but investors sold shares that had outperformed in previous sessions, which limited the overall gains,” said Shoichi Arisawa, general manager of the investment research department at IwaiCosmo Securities.

“Investors still remain concerned about a potential banking crisis and uncertainties about the economy in the U.S. and Europe.”

The banking index rose 2.67%, with Resona Holdings jumping 5.12% to become the top gainer on the Nikkei.

Mizuho Financial rose 3.36%, Sumitomo Financial Group advanced 3.02% and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group gained 2.47%.

Overnight, First Citizens BancShares said it would take on the deposits and loans of Silicon Valley Bank, offering a respite to the markets after weeks of turmoil.

Oil explorers rose 2.68% to become the top gainers on the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s 33 industry sub-indexes.

Heavyweight chip-related shares weighed on the Nikkei, with Tokyo Electron losing 0.92%, Advantest slipping 1.09% and Shin-Etsu Chemical falling 0.93%.

Airlines fell 0.16% after rising 0.9% in the previous session, while the railway sector lost 0.37% after gaining 1.8% in the previous session.

Of the Nikkei components, 136 rose and 78 fell, while 10 were flat.

The volume of shares traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s main board was 0.52 billion, compared to the average of 1.28 billion in the past 30 days.

(Reporting by Junko Fujita; Editing by Sonia Cheema)

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