Financials, shippers push Japanese shares higher

·2 min read

TOKYO, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Japanese shares rose on Friday as investors scooped up cyclical stocks on hopes fallout from China Evergrande's debt woes and the prospects of tapering by the U.S. Federal Reserve will not derail global economic growth momentum.

Nikkei share average was up 1.95% at 30,219.55, as of 0130 GMT, recovering from much of the losses it suffered earlier this week on worries about property developer Evergrande's debt crisis. The broader Topix rose 2.06% to 2,085.62.

The gains were in part a catch-up to the rallies in global shares on Thursday when Japanese markets were closed for autumnal equinox holiday.

"It's like the fog has cleared up for markets after the Fed's meeting and Evergrande's coupon payment," Yuya Fukue, a trader at Rheos Capital Works said.

Evergrande's payment obligations have captured global attention in recent weeks as fears have spread that its difficulties could pose systemic risks to China's financial system and possibly to other markets.

The developer was expected to provide more clarity in the coming month, even though its dollar bondholders were still waiting for information about a key interest payment due on Thursday.

In a sign of strong sentiment, shippers, known for high price volatility and already sitting on a gain of more than 90% so far this quarter, led the gains with rise of 6.4% to a 13-year high on the back of robust shipping market.

Kawasaki Kisen soared 7.8% while Nippon Yusen gained 6.9% and Mitsui OSK Lines added 6.4%.

Financials also gained on hopes of higher interest income, after U.S. bond yields rose following hints from the U.S. Fed that it will soon begin tapering its bond purchases. Insurers rose 2.95%, with Dai-ichi Life up 3.9% and T&D Holdings gaining 3.7%. Banks also came close with 2.85% gains while MUFG rose 3.6% and SMFG advanced 2.8%. Elsewhere, Sony rose as much as 4.0% to a 21-year high, while Simplex, a system developer that was listed on Wednesday, dropped 6.3%. (Reporting by Hideyuki Sano; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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