November 29, 2017 / 2:53 AM / 2 months ago

Nikkei rises, led by banks, financials

TOKYO, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Japan’s Nikkei share average rose on Wednesday as banks and financial shares tracked their U.S. counterparts higher, shrugging off another North Korean missile launch.

The Nikkei was up 0.4 percent at 22,576.86 points at the end of morning trading.

The broader Topix gained 0.7 percent to 1,785.14, while the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 also added 0.7 percent to 15,809.76.

Financial and securities shares were among strong gainers, with the banking subindex rising 2.2 percent and the insurance subindex 2.8 percent higher.

The securities subindex was up 1.8 percent and the financials subindex rose 1.9 percent.

On Wall Street, all three major indexes logged record closing highs, led by surging financials.

In testimony before a Senate committee, Jerome Powell, nominated to replace Janet Yellen as Fed chair, defended the need to potentially lighten regulation on the financial sector.

Sentiment remained intact despite North Korea firing what appeared to be an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that landed close to Japan.

Nomura Holdings was up 1.9 percent, after Japan’s biggest brokerage and investment bank said it would cancel treasury shares worth 4.7 percent of its outstanding shares on Dec. 18

Drugstore chain MatsumotoKiyoshi Holdings shares rose 2.5 percent after a media report that the company will to tie up with insurer Dai-ichi Life Holdings to sell insurance products in December.

Reporting by Lisa Twaronite; Editing by Kim Coghill

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