December 27, 2017 / 6:36 AM / 22 days ago

Nikkei inches up, crude rally lifts oil-related shares

TOKYO, Dec 27 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average inched up on Wednesday, with a rally in crude prices supporting oil-related shares.

The Nikkei ended 0.08 percent higher at 22,911.21.

With crude prices reaching 2-1/2-year highs, Inpex Corp , an oil and natural gas producer, added 2.3 percent.

Offshore oil drilling company Japan Drilling Co rose 2.1 percent and Japan Petroleum Exploration Co advanced 3.3 percent. Oil refiner Idemitsu Kosan Co gained 2.6 percent.

Ship builder Kawasaki Heavy Industries advanced 7.9 percent after announcing that it would post an extraordinary loss of 13 billion yen ($114.75 million) from the termination of an offshore construction agreement with a Norwegian company.

While the termination would incur losses, the announcement was greeted positively as the offshore construction project was seen to have been burdening Kawasaki Heavy with extra costs.

Cryptocurrency-related shares gained after a sharp rebound by bitcoin.

Internet provider GMO Internet Inc, which is engaged in the “mining” of bitcoin, rose 3.1 percent.

Remixpoint Inc, an operator of virtual currency trading post services, gained 5 percent.

Of Tokyo’s 33 subindexes, 26 were in positive territory, led by mining and oil and coal products.

Trade is slowing as the year draws to a close with the volume of the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s first section at 981 million shares versus the daily average of 1.62 billion over the past 30 days.

The broader Topix was 0.15 percent higher at 1,829.79. ($1 = 113.2900 yen) (Reporting by Shinichi Saoshiro; Editing by Eric Meijer)

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