TOKYO, Jan 22 (Reuters) - Japanese shares staged a modest rebound on Wednesday, as earlier investor panic about the coronavirus in China abated, although hygeine-related firms remained in demand and pressure on the tourism sector persisted.
The Nikkei share average rose 0.7% to 24,031.35 to claw back most of its 0.9% losses from the previous session, while the broader Topix added 0.5% to 1,744.13.
The virus, which causes a type of pneumonia, has spread to more Chinese cities including Beijing and Shanghai as the number of patients in China more than tripled. More cases were are reported outside China, including the United States.
Support for hygiene-related stocks remained strong. Azearth , a supplier of protective attire, soared 23.9%, one day after it climbed to its daily limit while fibre-maker Omikenshi jumped 9,9%, also after rising to its daily limit previous day.
Daikin Industries, which produces air conditioning products, climbed 2.3%.
On the flip side, inbound visitor-related stocks remained under pressure.
Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings dropped 1.0% and while Bic Camera Inc sagged 0.9% each, due to worries that the number of Chinese tourists to Japan could decrease.
Rising Chinese and Hong Kong stocks improved the investor sentiment and contributed to firmer Tokyo market as China's response to a virus outbreak tempered some fears of a global pandemic, traders said.
"The market was due for a mild correction at this level anyway and speculators used China's coronavirus outbreak was as an excuse to sell," said Yasuo Sakuma, chief investment officer at Libra Investments. The Nikkei climbed to a 15-month high on Friday.
He said institutional investors have largely been taking a wait-and-see stance ahead the Japanese corporate earnings season for the December quarter.
Nidec Corp and Disco Corp are due to announce their financial results on Thursday.
Elsewhere, Mitsubishi Motors slumped 4.2% after the German prosecutor's office said it is probing the carmaker for suspected use of illegal defeat devices installed in its diesel engines. (Reporting By Tomo Uetake; Editing by Sam Holmes)