Nikkei scales 18-1/2 year peak on earnings optimism, Greek hopes
TOKYO, June 24 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average vaulted to the highest level since 1996, ramping up the gains to around 20 percent since the start of the year thanks to signs of a pick up in economic growth, earnings optimism and hopes Greece will avoid a debt default. The Nikkei climbed 0.3 percent to 20,868.03, rising above its peak of 20,833.21 hit at the height of the dot-com bubble in 2000. The broader Topix rose 0.2 percent to 1,679.89, an eight-year closing high. (Editing by Shri Navaratnam)
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