Nikkei rises after Greece offers new proposals to avert default
* Record short-selling ratio may invite buying near term - traders * Taisei and Obayashi soar on report about nuclear project in Turkey By Ayai Tomisawa TOKYO, June 22 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average rose on Monday morning on hopes that 11th-hour proposals from Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras would appease its creditors and help avert a default. The Nikkei share average advanced 0.8 percent to 20,339.75 in midmorning trade after opening flat. After months of wrangling and with anxious depositors pulling billions of euros out of Greek banks, Tsipras's leftist government showed a new willingness this weekend to make concessions that would unlock frozen aid to avert default. Some traders believe that buyers would find opportunities in a market that has run up huge short positions, with the Nikkei falling for the third week in a row last week. Data compiled by the Tokyo Stock Exchange last week showed that the short selling ratio on the bourse climbed to a record high of 38.3 percent of total traded value as of last Thursday. "This indicates that they may buy back in the near term if overseas concerns ease, but it probably won't happen in one day and sentiment may remain fragile at least until the end of the week," said Hikaru Sato, a senior technical analyst at Daiwa Securities. "Developments in Europe are likely to determine the mood." Exporters were higher, with Honda Motor Co rising 1.4 percent, Canon Inc gaining 1.1 percent and Komatsu Ltd adding 2.0 percent. Banks were also attracting buyers. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group gained 2.7 percent and Mizuho Financial Group advanced 1.6 percent. Contractors Taisei Corp rose 2.4 percent and Obayashi Corp jumped 3.6 percent after the Nikkei business daily reported that they will join a nuclear power plant project in Turkey led by the Japanese and Turkish governments. The broader Topix gained 0.8 percent to 1,643.68 and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 also tacked on 0.8 percent to 14,834.24. (Editing by Shri Navaratnam)
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