April 21, 2016 / 6:21 AM / 2 years ago

Nikkei hits 2-1/2 month high on sliding yen, rising hopes of BOJ easing

TOKYO, April 21 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks rose to a 2-1/2 month high on Thursday after the yen resumed a weakening trend against the U.S. dollar amid a bounce in oil prices and growing expectations of further easing from the Bank of Japan.

The Nikkei share average climbed 2.7 percent to end the day at 17,363.62, its highest level since February 3.

“It’s nice to see the Nikkei blast up above 17,000 points but it’s hard to imagine that we’ll hold this level with so much global uncertainty and geopolitical risk,” said Gavin Parry, managing director at Parry International Trading.

“It’s only a matter of time before we see another exogenous shock that sends the yen higher due to its status as a safe-haven currency.”

Mitsubishi Motor Corp shares remained untraded on Thursday as sell orders piled up throughout the session after the automaker said on Wednesday that it had manipulated test data to overstate the fuel economy of 625,000 cars sold in Japan. Mitsubishi Motor’s stock ended the day 20.5 percent lower at a record-low 583 yen.

Fujifilm Holdings Corp ended the day 6.3 percent higher after the Nikkei business daily reported the imaging company would project a record group operating profit of around 220 billion yen ($2.0 billion) for the fiscal year ending March 2017.

The broader Topix climbed 2 percent to end the day at 1,393.68 with each of its 33 subindexes in positive territory.

The JPX-Nikkei Index 400 rose 2.2 percent to 12,620.20. ($1 = 109.7400 yen) (Reporting by Joshua Hunt; Editing by Sam Holmes)

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