Japanese shares gain after 3 days of falls, Omicron worries weigh


TOKYO, Dec 1 (Reuters) – Japanese shares rose on Wednesday after three straight sessions of sharp losses, with paper and pulp, shipping and auto stocks leading the rebound, although uncertainties over the impact of the Omicron coronavirus variant weighed on market sentiment.

The Nikkei share average (.N225) rose 0.8% to 28,040.35 by 0153 GMT after declining 0.8% earlier in the session. The broader Topix (.TOPX) also reversed early losses to gain 0.62% to 1,940.43. The Nikkei lost 5.7% in the last three sessions, while the Topix declined 4.8%.

The market is volatile as investors are reacting cautiously to the uncertainties of the Omicron variant, said Shoichi Arisawa, general manager of the investment research department at IwaiCosmo Securities.

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“But once we find out what the new Omicron variant is, investors would calm down even if it proves to be a strong enemy,” he said.

The economy-sensitive paper and pulp (.IPAPR.T) and shipping (.ISHIP.T) sectors rose the most among the bourse’s 33 industry sub-indexes.

Robot maker Fanuc (6954.T) and air-conditioning maker Daikin Industries (6367.T) contributed the most to the Nikkei’s gain, rising 4.7% and 3.8%, respectively.

Automakers (.ITEQP.T) rose after data showed Japan’s industrial output rose in October for the first time in four months as re-opening of Asian factories eased supply constraints. read more

Toyota Motor (7203.T) gained 3.5%, while Honda Motor (7267.T) advanced 2.58%. Autoparts maker Denso (6902.T) advanced 2.63%.

Technology heavyweights fell, with start-up investor SoftBank Group (9984.T) sliding 1.96% and medical services platform M3 (2413.T) losing 1.37%.

Seiko Epson (6724.T) gained the most on the Nikkei with a 4.81% rise, followed by Oji Holdings (3861.T), which added 4.57%, and TOTO (5332.T), up 4.57%.

CyberAgent Inc (4751.T), down 3.25%, was the biggest loser on the index, followed by Z Holdings (4689.T), which slipped 3.16%, and Ajinomoto (2802.T), falling 2.32%.

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Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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