Headline shares of the Japan share market closed higher on Friday, 19 July 2019, as investors snapped up bargains following three-days losing streak after top Federal Reserve official cemented expectations of a United States (US) interest rate cut later this month. Most of subsectors of the Topix's index inclined, with securities house and food-related issues being notable gainers. At closing bell, the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average fell 420.75 points, or 2%, to 21,466.99, while the broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange rose 29.69 points, or 1.94%, at 1,563.96.
Tokyo market commenced trading with firm footing as appetite for riskier assets underpinned after New York Fed President John Williams said on Thursday that policymakers need to add stimulus early to deal with too-low inflation when interest rates are near zero and cannot wait for economic disaster to unfold, in a speech read as a strong argument in favour of quick action. The comments by Williams made it a virtual certainty the Fed would opt to cut interest rates by 25 basis points (bps) at its July 30-31 policy meeting and also fuelled expectations of an even deeper 50 bp reduction.
ECONOMIC NEWS: Japan All Industry Activity Growth Decelerates In May -- Japan's all industrial activity rose 0.3% month-on-month in May for the second month but slower than 0.8% rise in April, figures from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry showed on Friday.
Among components, the industrial production index rose 2.1% in May. The construction activity index grew 1.4%. While, the tertiary industrial activity fell 0.2% in May. On an annual basis, the all industry activity index remained flat in May, after a 0.7% rise in the previous month.
CURRENCY NEWS: The Japanese yen traded at 107.55 against the dollar after strengthening from levels above 107.6 in the previous session.
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