January 25, 2017 / 3:20 AM / a year ago

Nikkei rises, catching tailwind from Wall Street; Takata bounces

* S&P 500, Nasdaq end at records overnight

* Investors grow more optimistic for Trump’s policies

TOKYO, Jan 25 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average rose on Wednesday, getting a lift from record finishes on Wall Street on hopes the new U.S. administration will push up growth through a spending boost.

The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite set record highs on Tuesday in a broad rally led by financial and technology stocks as investors grew more optimistic that clarity on President Donald Trump’s economic policies will be forthcoming.

Trump met with chief executives of the Big Three U.S. automakers on Tuesday to push for more U.S.-built cars, and also signed two executive orders to move forward with energy infrastructure projects halted by the previous administration.

“It’s largely a ‘Trump market’ at the moment, with sentiment moving on whatever he says on a particular day,” said Ayako Sera, market strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank in Tokyo.

The Nikkei was up 1.1 percent at midday at 18,994.33.

“The Nikkei’s upside for now appears to be around 19,200,” said Yutaka Miura, a senior technical analyst at Mizuho Securities, noting that the yen remains rangebound against the dollar.

“The yen appears to be unlikely to weaken much as long as there are concerns about Trump’s protectionist policies,” he said.

Data released earlier on Wednesday showed that Japan’s exports rose for the first time in 15 months in December on strong sales of electronics and car parts, a positive sign for the export-reliant economy even as U.S. protectionism looms over the outlook from now.

The Tokyo Stock Exchange’s securities subindex added 1.3 percent, buoyed by the stronger market.

The broader Topix and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 both added 0.8 percent, to 1,518.36 and 13,607.71 respectively.

Shares of Toshiba Corp slipped 3.5 percent as the company prepared to give the nod to spinning off its chip business. The company’s board will meet on Friday to approve plans to make its chip business a separate company and hopes to raise more than 200 billion yen ($1.76 billion) by selling a 20 percent stake in it, a person with direct knowledge of the matter said.

Japanese airline ANA Holdings saw its shares rise 1.5 percent after the Nikkei reported that it expects to post a record operating profit for the nine month period through December 2016.

Shares in Japanese air bag manufacturer Takata Corp jumped 18.2 percent, rising by their daily limit after four days of steep decline brought about by investor fear of a court-mediated bankruptcy.

Reporting by Tokyo markets team; Editing by Shri Navaratnam

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