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Japanese Stock Prices Close Higher

February 23, 2000

TOKYO (AP) _ Japanese stocks rose today following a rebound Tuesday on Wall Street. The dollar fell against the yen.

The benchmark 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average finished the day at 19,519.55 points, up 128.97 points, or 0.67 percent. On Tuesday, the average fell 153.17 points, or 0.78 percent.

The dollar bought 110.58 yen in late Tokyo trading, down 0.62 yen from Tuesday and also below its late New York level of 110.70 yen Tuesday.

On the stock market, investors were encouraged by Tuesday’s gains in New York, where the Dow Jones industrial average rebounded from a decline of nearly 115 points during trading to close with a gain of 85.32 points at 10,304.84. The Nasdaq composite index fell in New York on Tuesday, but finished well above its lows for the day.

In Tokyo, profit-taking on information technology issues and selling of so-called cross-held issues limited today’s rise.

Japanese companies often unwind shares they hold in other companies prior to the close of each fiscal year, which ends March 31.

Tuesday’s recovery on Wall Street offered some relief to the Tokyo market, which has been increasingly anxious about the prospect of a major downward correction in U.S. stocks. On Friday, the Dow Jones index tumbled 295.05 points, or 2.8 percent.

The broader Tokyo Stock Price Index of all issues listed on the first section gained 22.65 points today, or 1.38 percent, to 1,667.24. The TOPIX closed down 36.13 points, or 2.15 percent, the day before.

In currency dealings, the dollar came under selling pressure against the yen amid the euro’s strength against the greenback. On Tuesday, the euro rose against above $1 for the first time since Jan. 27 on speculation some European nations may raise interest rates.

Against the Japanese currency today, the euro bought 110.93 yen, down from 111.31 yen late Tuesday in Tokyo.

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Japanese government bond fell to 1.8400 percent from Tuesday’s finish of 1.8550 percent. Its price rose 0.98 point to 99.66.

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