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Japan Stocks Edge Higher

February 23, 2000

TOKYO (AP) _ Japanese stocks edged higher early Wednesday following a recovery on Wall Street. The dollar was lower against the yen.

The benchmark 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average gained 11.04 points, or 0.06 percent, to 19,401.62 in the first 30 minutes of trading. On Tuesday, the average closed down 153.17 points, or 0.78 percent.

The dollar bought 110.72 yen, down 0.48 yen from late Tuesday in Tokyo but above its late New York level of 110.70 yen.

On the stock market, the Nikkei average opened modestly higher Wednesday as investors were encouraged by Tuesday’s gains in New York, where the Dow Jones industrial average rose 85.32 points to close at 10,304.84.

``Firmer U.S. stocks and the strength of Nikkei futures on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange overnight are supporting the market this morning,″ said Hiroichi Nishi, deputy general manager at Nikko Securities.

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 was up 1.52 points, or 0.09 percent, to 1,646.11. The TOPIX closed down 36.13 points, or 2.15 percent, the day before.

In currency dealings, traders said the dollar was expected to consolidate in a narrow range on Wednesday after coming off a new six-month high set in Asia on Tuesday.

In other currencies, the euro was traded at 110.99 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 0.13 point to 99.66.

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