Japan share market finished slight higher in choppy trade on Wednesday, 16 September 2020, on caution ahead of the outcomes of central banks' policy setting meetings in the U. S. and Japan, while eyeing the new Cabinet picks under Japan's newly elected prime minister.
At closing bell, the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average added 20.64 points, or 0.09%, to 23,475.53. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was up 3.51 points, or 0.21%, to 1,644.35.
Total 24 issues of the 33 industry category of Topix index ended into red territory, with Marine Transportation, Rubber Products, Mining, Air Transportation, Construction, Nonferrous Metals, Banks, and Iron & Steel issues being notable losers, while Information & Communication, Foods, Pharmaceutical, and Retail Trade issues were notable gainers.
Many investors were on the sidelines before the end of the Fed meeting. While no major change in policy is expected, the central bank is likely to emphasise that interest rates will remain low for an extended period to support job creation.
Market focus was also on the Bank of Japan's policy decision, due on Thursday, with the central bank expected to leave its monetary easing stance unchanged.
Japan's parliament is expected to formally approve Yoshihide Suga as the next prime minister sometime later on Wednesday. However, the formation of a new government has already been priced into the Japanese stock market because Finance Minister Taro Aso will retain his post, which suggests little change to economic policy.
ECONOMIC NEWS: Japan Posts Trade Surplus Of Y248.299 Billion In August-Japan posted a merchandise trade surplus of 248.299 billion yen in August, the Ministry of Finance said on Wednesday, following the 11.6 billion yen surplus in July. Exports were down 14.8 percent on year to 5.232 trillion yen, after sinking 19.2 percent in the previous month. Imports tumbled an annual 20.8 percent to 4.984 trillion yen following the 22.3 percent decline a month earlier.
CURRENCY: The Japanese yen traded at 105.39 per dollar following a strengthening seen earlier this week from levels above 106 against the greenback.
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