* Investors relieved as North Korea takes no new missile
* Securities shares jump in line with market gains
TOKYO, April 25 Japan's Nikkei share average
retook the 19,000 level on Tuesday for the first time in three
weeks, buoyed by Wall Street gains as well as relief that North
Korea did not conduct another missile test to mark a military
Investors had speculated that Pyongyang could launch another
long-range missile launch to coincide with the 85th anniversary
of the foundation of the North's Korean People's Army on
Tuesday. Such launches have typically come in the morning.
"When the morning passed with nothing from North Korea, the
sense of relief grew, and so the market extended its early
gains," said Norihiro Fujito, a senior investment strategist at
Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities in Tokyo.
"Stocks were already higher after U.S. shares rallied on
relief after the French election," he added.
Major indexes on Wall Street all gained more than one
percent on Monday, a day after centrist candidate and market
favourite Emmanuel Macron won the first round of the French
The Nikkei was up 0.8 percent at midday at
19,034.74, getting a tailwind from a modestly weaker yen.
The dollar added 0.3 percent on the day to 110.08 yen
But the Japanese currency could face upward pressure
depending on developments in North Korea, as the perceived
safe-haven currency tends to gain in times of geopolitical
A nuclear-powered U.S. submarine made a port call in South
Korea on Tuesday in a show of force, as the top nuclear envoys
from South Korea, Japan, and the United States were to meet in
Tokyo to discuss responses to the North's refusal to give up its
On the domestic front, the Bank of Japan will begin a
two-day policy meeting on Wednesday, at which it is set to offer
a more upbeat assessment of the economy than it did last month
as a pick-up in overseas demand bolsters exports and factory
output, sources have told Reuters.
The stock market rally lifted shares of securities firms.
The Tokyo Stock Exchange's securities subindex gained
Shares of NEC Corp shares rose 3.5 percent and hit
one-month highs after the electronics giant raised its net and
operating profit forecasts on Monday.
Yamato Holdings shares jumped 5.5 percent after
Nikkei reported that the transportation services group plans to
raise base shipping rates for retail customers by 5 to 20
percent from September, and seek steeper increases for
The broader Topix rose 0.9 percent to 1,516.80,
while the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 added one percent to
(Reporting by Tokyo markets team; Editing by Sam Holmes)