Japan's Nikkei rises as firm Wall Street lifts risk appetite

TOKYO, June 5 (Reuters) – Japan’s Nikkei share average rose on Monday as gains on Wall Street lifted risk appetite, while investors kept betting on domestic equities on expectations the Bank of Japan would keep its ultra-loose policy.

By 0147 GMT, the Nikkei index had gained 1.59% 32,030.31, crossing the 32,000 level for the first time since July 1990. The broader Topix was up 1.40% to 2,213.15.

“The market was supported by the gains in the U.S. market on Friday. That helped keep the money flowing into risk assets in Japan,” said Shigetoshi Kamada, general manager at the research department at Tachibana Securities.

“Also, Japanese equities are in a more favourable position as investors expect the BOJ would keep its easy monetary policy. So they would go, ‘Why not invest in Japan if U.S. stocks gain’.”

The Bank of Japan will hold a two-day policy meeting, starting June 15.

Japanese companies’ ongoing efforts to boost shareholder returns also supported sentiments, Kamada said.

On Friday, U.S. stocks closed higher after a labour market report showing moderating wage growth in May indicated the Federal Reserve may skip a rate hike in two weeks, while investors welcomed a Washington deal that avoided a catastrophic debt default.

Among individual stocks in Japan, Uniqlo brand owner Fast Retailing 2.77% to provide the biggest support to the Nikkei. Technology investor SoftBank Group rose 1.67% and robot maker Fanuc rose 3.04%.

Energy explorers rose 2.25% after as oil prices jumped. . Refiners advanced 2.19%.

Chip-related shares, which initially tracked declines in the Philadelphia semiconductor index, reversed course, with chip-making equipment makers Tokyo Electron and Screen Holdings rising 0.34% and 0.3%.

Tokyo Electric Power Holdings lost 1.91% to become the biggest loser on the Nikkei.

Nine of the 225 Nikkei components declined, while two were flat.

Reporting by Junko Fujita; Editing by Janane Venkatraman