Nikkei rebounds as financials soar, ends quarter down 14.1 pct
By Joshua Hunt
TOKYO, Sept 30 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks rebounded on Wednesday, shrugging off data that showed Japan's factory output unexpectedly fell for the second straight month in August.
The Nikkei share average gained 2.7 percent to 17,388.15, but ended the quarter down 14.1 percent, making it one of the worst performers among developed markets.
Analysts said most investors remained on the sidelines awaiting key economic data due from China on Thursday and the U.S. on Friday. Those who led Wednesday's buying picked up bargains on stocks that plunged Tuesday, when the benchmark Nikkei share average fell to an 8-1/2 month low.
The market's sluggish performance in recent weeks has kept alive hopes that policymakers may bring about fresh stimulus to stoke growth, offering some support for Japanese stocks.
Banking, insurance and other financial sectors outperformed with the Topix insurance subindex gaining 3.9 percent. Dai-Ichi Life Insurance climbed 4 percent.
Japan Tobacco Inc bucked the rebound, tumbling 6.7 percent after it agreed to pay Reynolds American Inc 600 billion yen ($5.00 billion) for brand rights to its Natural American Spirit tobacco business outside of the U.S. Traders said the price was viewed as too expensive.
The broader Topix gained 2.6 percent to 1,411.16, closing with all of its 33 subindexes in positive territory, but it lost 13.5 percent for the quarter. The JPX-Nikkei 400 rose 2.6 percent to 12,628.54. ($1 = 119.8900 yen) (Reporting by Joshua Hunt; editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)
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