TOKYO, Aug 19 (Reuters) - Japanese shares eked out small gains on Wednesday, as some technology firms rallied after U.S. tech giants drove the S&P 500 to a record peak overnight.
The Nikkei share average rose 0.22% to 23,101.76, after two straight sessions of losses that pulled it down from a six-month peak of 23,338 hit last week. The broader Topix edged up 0.13% to 1,612.99.
“Some technology shares that benefit from new types of demand after the coronavirus epidemic will continue to do well. But for the overall stock index to rise, investors need more positive factors to buy,” said Norihiro Fujito, chief investment strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities.
Softbank Group, which invests in tech firms around the world, rose 2.0% while Nintendo gained 1.2% to a 12-year high.
IT equipment and service firms Fujitsu and NEC gained 2.5% and 3.9%, respectively.
Start-up shares in the Mothers market rallied to a two-year high, with Modalis Therapeutics, which listed earlier this month, gaining 12.2%.
Sony, meanwhile, dropped 2.4% following the news that Third Point LLC has sold off a large part of its investment in the company, although some investors think the long-term impact of the U.S. activist fund’s move would be negligible.
Sony was also under pressure due to concerns over Washington’s tightening restrictions on sales to China’s Huawei Technologies.
Other Huawei suppliers also dropped, with Taiyo Yuden losing 2.3% and Murata Manufacturing shedding 0.8%.
The market showed little reaction to domestic data showing an unexpected drop in machinery orders as well as a fall in exports. (Reporting by Hideyuki Sano; Editing by Aditya Soni)
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