Nikkei bounces off 6-week low, economic uncertainty casts shadow
TOKYO, March 24 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average climbed 1.8 percent on Monday, bouncing off from a six-week low on the back of a tentative recovery in risk appetite, though underlying concerns about Japan's economic outlook kept gains in check. The benchmark Nikkei gained 251.07 points to 14,475.30, completely reversing the previous session's losses, after a market holiday on Friday. Still, the index was down more than 11 percent since the start of this year, likely heading for its first quarterly decline in 1-1/2 years. Stocks offering high dividends or other shareholder benefits enjoyed a decent bounce before the dividend record date on Wednesday, with Daiichi Sankyo Co Ltd and ANA Holdings Inc rising 4 percent and 3.2 percent, respectively. The broader Topix advanced 1.5 percent to 1,163.04 in relatively active trade, with 2.92 billion shares changing hands, one of the heaviest in the past month. The JPX-Nikkei Index 400, a recently introduced gauge comprised of companies with a high return on equity and robust corporate governance, added 1.3 percent to 10,526.41. (Reporting by Tomo Uetake; Editing by Shri Navaratnam)
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