Nikkei climbs to 1-1/2-week high after Greece agrees to debt deal
* Nikkei above 25-day moving average for 1st time in a week * Investor focus shifts back to the timing of Fed hikes - analysts * Chinese market's volatility still in focus - analysts By Ayai Tomisawa TOKYO, July 14 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks surged on Tuesday morning to a 1-1/2-week high after Greece agreed to a debt deal with its creditors, lifting all sectors while the weaker yen supported overall sentiment. The Nikkei share average rose 1.6 percent to 20,419.95 in mid-morning trade, after rising as high as 20,435.53 earlier, the highest since July 3. The index rose above its 25-day moving average for the first time in a week. Greece won conditional agreement to receive a possible $95 billion over three years, along with an assurance of talks to bridge a funding gap until a bailout is ready. Analysts said that Greek woes had receded, which helped investors' shift attention back to when the U.S. Federal Reserve would raise interest rates. Meanwhile, Fed Chair Janet Yellen is set to testify on the economy before Congress on Wednesday. Market observers also said that investors would look to signs of recovery in the Japanese economy. Masashi Oda, senior investment officer at Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, said once risk-averse investors will likely revisit Japanese shares. "Recovering economic data and the first half of Japanese corporate earnings will continue to be in focus," Oda said. Exporters were higher, with Toyota Motor Corp rising 1.3 percent, Honda Motor Co adding 2.0 percent and Panasonic Corp gaining 1.8 percent. Financial stocks were also in demand, with Nomura Holdings jumping 4.9 percent and Daiwa Securities Group soaring 3.3 percent. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group gained 1.8 percent and Mizuho Financial Group rose 1.5 percent. Daio Paper Corp jumped 8.9 percent to a two-week high after the Nikkei business daily said the company's pre-tax profit likely jumped 26 percent for the April-June quarter helped by strong baby diaper sales. On the other hand, Sony Corp dropped 2.2 percent to 3,448 yen after it set a price of 3,420.5 yen per share for its first new-share offering in 26 years, lower than the current stock price. The broader Topix gained 1.7 percent to 1,641.15, with all of its 33 sub-sectors rising. The JPX-Nikkei Index 400 advanced 1.8 percent to 14,836.23. (Editing by Jacqueline Wong)
© Thomson Reuters 2016 All rights reserved.