February 16, 2018 / 3:42 AM / a year ago

Nikkei rises on relief over Kuroda's BOJ reappointment

TOKYO, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks rose on Friday morning, with investors relieved to see the government appoint Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda for another term and choose an advocate of bolder monetary easing as one of his deputies.

The Nikkei rose 1.1 percent to 21,699.71 at the midday break.

In a widely expected move, the government nominated Kuroda to serve another five-year term when the current one ends in April, a sign of Premier Shinzo Abe's confidence in the governor's efforts to stimulate the economy out of stagnation.

The government also submitted to parliament its nomination of Masazumi Wakatabe, a professor at Waseda University and an advocate of aggressive monetary easing, as deputy governor.

The other deputy governor post went to BOJ Executive Director Masayoshi Amamiya, a veteran central banker known for masterminding monetary policy strategies.

"In the short term, the BOJ gave the stock market relief by not derailing Kuroda's monetary policy. It sent a message to the market that the main part of Abenomics (the government's revival plan) will not change," said Norihiro Fujito, senior investment strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities.

"It must have made the right choice by selecting Wakatabe and Amamiya when the market is volatile."

The broader Topix gained 1.1 percent to 1,738.72, with all 33 subsectors except sea transport in positive territory. Shares in utilities, food and medicine companies, which are most sensitive to domestic demand, outperformed.

Tokyo Electric Power Co soared 3.4 percent, Chubu Electric Power Co jumped 5.4 percent, Astellas Pharma gained 1.6 percent and Ajinomoto Co added 1.5 percent.

Exporters were also strong, with Toyota Motor and Honda Motor and Panasonic Corp all rising 1.7 percent. (Reporting by Ayai Tomisawa; Editing by Eric Meijer)

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