TOKYO, May 16 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei stock average
gained for a second day on Monday, taking cues from previous
session's tech-driven rally on Wall Street, although gains were
curbed as China's economic data fuelled slowdown worries.
The Nikkei ended 0.45% higher at 26,547.05. The
benchmark jumped as much as 1.55% to a one-week high of
26,836.96 in early trading, but shed most of the early gains
after data showed a sharper-than-expected slowdown at factories
and shops in major trade partner China.
Tech was by far the Nikkei's best-performing sector, up
0.88%, while basic materials led the losers with a 1.01% drop.
Losers handily outnumbered winners though, with 137 of the
Nikkei's 225 component stocks declining, compared with 86 that
rose and two that were flat.
The broader Topix edged down 0.05% to 1,863.26 after
opening the day about 1% higher.
The Nasdaq led gains in the U.S. stock indexes on
Friday with a 3.7% advance. The Philadelphia SE Semiconductor
Index jumped 5% on the day.
However, the mood in global markets soured on Monday after
shockingly weak data from China underlined the deep damage
lockdowns are doing to the world's second-largest economy.
"The risks from China's slowdown are one of the main reasons
for the poor sentiment in equity markets," said Masayuki
Kichikawa, chief macro strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui Asset
Management in Tokyo.
"At the same time, we may be close to the peak in terms of
China concerns," he said, with the government now starting to
ease COVID-19 restrictions.
Shanghai will gradually begin reopening businesses such as
shopping malls and hair salons from Monday, following weeks of
Earnings results also divided Japan's market sentiment, with
Friday marking the climax of the corporate reporting season. For
instance, precision parts maker NTN Corp was the
biggest percentage gainer with an 11.68% surge versus Dowa
Holdings' 13.06% tumble.
Automakers were also mixed, with Mazda rising
5.65%, but Honda slumped 4.37% on a disappointing
earnings forecast and motorcycle-maker Yamaha sank
9.11%, having reported underwhelming results after the bell on
(Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)