TOKYO, Aug 14 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks on Wednesday recouped nearly all of the previous day’s sharp losses, thanks to Washington delaying the start of tariffs on some Chinese imports.
President Donald Trump’s move gave a much-needed reprieve for markets, with Japan’s chipmaking sector and Apple-related firms getting the strongest tailwind.
The Nikkei share average gained 1.0% to 20,655.13, recovering most of its 1.1% fall on Tuesday, while the broader Topix rose 0.9% to 1,499.50.
While the White House’s announcement on the tariff delay prompted a relief rally on Asian markets, some analysts suspect this might be short-lived.
“Markets are responding with muted relief to the latest round in the trade saga - but nothing has really changed,” Robert Carnell, ING’s Asia-Pacific head of research said in a note to clients.
Trump backed off his Sept. 1 deadline for 10% tariffs on all Chinese goods not yet subject to them, delaying duties on cellphones, laptops and other consumer goods, in the hopes of blunting their impact on U.S. holiday sales.
In the U.S., shares of likely beneficiaries of the delay soared overnight, with Apple Inc up 4.2% on news that its iPhone, tablet and laptop computer products would be included in the items list, while the Philadelphia semiconductor index gained 3.0%.
Taking positive cues from this, Tokyo-listed Apple-related electronic parts makers and chip-related firms jumped.
Taiyo Yuden leaped 6.3%, while Murata Manufacturing and TDK Corp climbed 3.3% and 4.3%, respectively.
Semiconductor manufacturing equipment maker Screen Holdings rallied 6.0% and chipmaking equipment supplier Tokyo Electron added 1.1%.
Nintendo rallied 4.3% as game consoles are included in Trump’s temporary exemption list. The gaming firm plans to launch “Switch Lite” in September.
Other notable movers included Nikkei heavyweight Fanuc , up 2.0%, buoyed by an unexpected big rebound in Japan’s June machinery orders, in a possible sign corporate investment remains resilient in the face of slowing global growth and international trade frictions. (Reporting by Tomo Uetake; Editing by Richard Borsuk)