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Tokyo shares rebound; chip-related shares jump on Samsung’s Q3 guidance

Japanese shares bounced back on Tuesday ahead of high-level Sino-US talks this week to resolve a damaging trade war, with semiconductor-related firms leading the gains after Samsung flagged a slightly better than expected third-quarter profit.

The benchmark Nikkei average ended up 1.0 per cent at 21,587.78 points, while the broader Topix added 0.9 per cent to 1,586.50, though trading volume was below average as many investors remained on the sidelines before the key trade talks.

Chinese Vice Premier Liu He is due to meet US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Thursday and Friday, but hopes for a deal dimmed on Monday after President Donald Trump said a quick agreement was unlikely.

Overnight, the dollar rallied against the yen from a low of 106.55 yen to as high as 107.465 yen, providing a boost for shares of Japanese exporters as a weak yen enhances corporate profits when they are repatriated.

Among blue-chip exporters, Toyota Motor Co gained 1.5 per cent, NIDEC advanced 2.8 per cent and Omron Corp added 2.4 per cent.

Semiconductor-related shares made gains after South Korea’s Samsung Electronics flagged slightly better than expected third-quarter profit, helping to ease investor concerns about the smartphone market.

In Tokyo, Sumco jumped 3.8 per cent, Advantest soared 4.4 per cent and Screen Holdings climbed 3.7 per cent.

Investor sentiment was also helped by solid moves on the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock markets after a one-week holiday in China.

By sector, precision machinery, metal products and oil & coal products were the top three performers among the Tokyo bourse’s 33 sector subindexes, up 2.2 per cent, 2.0 per cent and 1.7 per cent, respectively.