Japanese shares end higher on bargain-hunting; Toshiba surges

TOKYO, April 7 (Reuters) - Japanese shares closed higher on Wednesday after posting their biggest drop in nearly two weeks in the previous session, while stocks of electronics makers gained after Toshiba Corp received a proposal to go private in a $20 billion deal.

The benchmark Nikkei share average ended up 0.12% at 29,730.79, while the broader Topix climbed 0.67% to 1,967.43. On Tuesday, the Nikkei and Topix had closed 1.3% and 1.5% lower, respectively.

“Investors are buying stocks after yesterday’s (Tuesday) sharp decline. This is a natural move,” said Hideyuki Suzuki, general manager at investment research for SBI Securities.

“The news on Toshiba has sent electronics makers higher. Investors could be thinking that if the Toshiba gets delisted, they would have to shift the money to its peers.”

Toshiba is considering a $20 billion offer from private equity firm CVC Capital Partners to take it private, a person familiar with the matter said, as the Japanese industrial conglomerate faces pressure from activist shareholders to improve governance.

Toshiba shares surged 18.28% to their daily limit after being untraded on a glut of buy orders.

Fujitsu advanced 2.03%, Hitachi gained 2.17% and Sharp rose 1.65%.

Shipping firm Nippon Yusen jumped 3.26% after raising its profit forecast for the year ended March to 200 billion yen ($1.82 billion) from 160 billion yen.

Its peers Kawasaki Kisen advanced 4.04% and Mitsui OSK Lines climbed 2.62%.

Other cyclical shares also gained after the International Monetary Fund raised its global growth forecast to 6% this year, a rate not seen since the 1970s, from 5.5% earlier.

The Topix sub-index for steel makers gained the most among the 33 sub-indexes, followed by the shipping sector .

($1 = 109.6200 yen)

Nikkei share average

The broader Topix

Editing by Uttaresh.V