Foreign net buying of Japan stocks biggest in 3 months

jueves 19 de marzo de 2015 04:16 GYT

TOKYO, March 19 (Reuters) - Foreign investors' net purchases
of Japanese stocks in the last week was the biggest in more than
three months as risk appetite was boosted by hopes of economic
recovery and better shareholder returns, exchange data showed on
    Foreign net buying of Japanese cash stocks was 306.2 billion
yen during March 9-13, data released by the Tokyo Stock Exchange
showed. It was the largest level since the week of Dec. 1-5.
    The Nikkei benchmark has been hitting fresh 15-year
highs on optimism over steady economic recovery, improved
corporate earnings and better shareholder returns, as well as
expectations Japan will be one of the main beneficiaries of weak
oil prices.
    The benchmark has outperformed other global peers this year.
It has gained 11.6 percent, while the U.S. S&P 500 index 
has added 2.0 percent since the beginning of the year.
    "Long-only investors who were underweight Japan have to
increase Japanese stock holdings if they don't want to lose,"
said Norihiro Fujito, senior investment strategist at Mitsubishi
UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities. "Even foreigners who were neutral
on Japan started thinking about being overweight."
    Fujito said that when foreign investors want to raise their
investment stance on Japan, they tend to buy stocks with large
market capitalisation.
    "There is a reason why Toyota and MUFG are hitting
multi-year highs," Fujito said.
    Toyota Motor Corp has been continually hitting new
highs, while Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group rose to the
highest level since October 2008.
    On the other hand, trust banks, which manage pension funds'
investments, were net sellers of Japanese stocks last week. They
sold a net 35.47 billion yen of cash stocks, the biggest since
Nov. 4-7, the exchange data showed.

 (Reporting by Ayai Tomisawa; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)