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September 15, 2005    

Tokyo equities up on technology and commodities

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by Brian Turner
Tokyo equities up on technology and commodities

The equities markets in Tokyo saw another day of gains on Thursday, helped by the commodities and technology sectors.

The Nikkei 225 gained 1.2 percent to 12,986.78, while the Topix index was up 1.1 percent to 1,327.29.

The iron and steel sector gained 3.5 percent, with Sumitomo Metal Industries gained 5.7 percent and Nippon Steel was up 4.5 percent to ¥351. Steelmakers’ shares have been helped particularly by their decision to boost dividends.

In the technology sector, computer maker Fujitsu gained 1.9 percent to ¥745 on the announcement Wednesday that its earnings estimates for the 2005/2006 fiscal year are on the conservative side.

Pentax advanced by 6.5 percent to ¥492 on an initial rating of “outperform” by Goldman Sachs. Matsushita gained 2 percent to ¥1,070 when Nikko Citigroup raised its earnings forecast and target share price. Matsushita makes Panasonic branded goods.

Many domestic sectors were up as well. Retailers were up 1.1 percent on the day, with department store operator Mitsukoshi gaining 2.4 percent to ¥516.

The securities sector gained 1.3 percent as Daiwa Securities added 1.4 percent to ¥792. Japan’s biggest general insurer, Nipponkoa, advanced by 1.5 percent to ¥801 as the sector as a whole gained 1.7 percent.

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