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Japan’s Nikkei gains as tech shares track U.S. peers higher

TOKYO, Jan 10 (Reuters) – Japan’s Nikkei share average rose on Tuesday, as technology stocks tracked their U.S. peers higher, but gains were limited as investors awaited the Bank of Japan’s policy meeting due next week.

The Nikkei rose 0.87% to 26,199.25 by the midday break, while the broader Topix gained 0.48% to 1,884.80.

The Nasdaq Composite ended well off the day’s highs overnight even as the Dow ended lower and the S&P 500 index closed nearly flat, as expectations that the Federal Reserve would dial back on its hawkish stance were offset by lingering worries about inflation.

“Treasury yields fell and the Nasdaq gained momentum in the U.S. overnight. So investors bought Japanese stocks but the gains were limited,” said Shuji Hosoi, senior strategist at Daiwa Securities.

“That is because investors were cautious about the Bank of Japan’s decision to be made at a policy meeting next week. The bank surprised investors last month, and the (central) bank may do something similar.”

Japan’s central bank last month widened the trading band for the benchmark 10-year government bonds to 0.5% from 0.25%, sending yields across the curve higher.

Drugmaker Eisai jumped as much as 8% in early trade after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved its Alzheimer’s drug lecanemab, developed in partnership with Biogen Inc, for patients in the earliest stages of the disease. It last traded up 4.28%.

Chip giants Tokyo Electron rose 3.35% and Advantest gained 1.53%. Technology investor SoftBank Group climbed 2.53%.

Heavyweight Fast Retailing, the owner of the Uniqlo clothing brand, gained 0.74%.

Bucking the trend, utility Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings lost 3.08% and was the worst performer on the Nikkei, followed by staffing agency Recruit Holdings, which lost 2.81%. Kansai Electric Power shed 2.55%. (Reporting by Junko Fujita; Editing by Eileen Soreng)

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