By Laura He, MarketWatch
HONG KONG (MarketWatch) -- Japan stocks extended gains Thursday, rising the most in three weeks and taking a cue from Wall Street gains as oil prices continued to firm up.
The Nikkei Average /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK -0.39% finished up 1.7%, posting its biggest daily percentage increase in nearly three weeks, which came on the heels of a rebound for U.S. stocks after five days of losses. The Japanese stock index closed marginally higher in the previous day, ending a four-day losing streak.
The broader Topix /zigman2/quotes/210598092/delayed JP:180460 -0.03% ended up 1.3%, while the yen /zigman2/quotes/210561789/realtime/sampled USDJPY -0.2105% weakened to ¥119.76 per dollar, compared with ¥119.16 late Wednesday in New York.
Tech companies traded broadly higher, with electronics component maker TDK Corporation /zigman2/quotes/208948266/delayed JP:6762 -1.22% jumping 3.2%, semiconductor manufacturer Renesas Electronics Corporation /zigman2/quotes/203872935/delayed JP:6723 -0.90% climbing 2.4%, and console maker Nintendo Co., Ltd. higher by 2.3%.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI -1.13% rose for a second straight day, up 0.7%, with markets heavyweights Tencent Holdings /zigman2/quotes/204605823/delayed HK:700 -2.24% and China Mobile Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/200868736/delayed HK:941 -0.97% helping support the benchmark index. Tencent Holdings improved by 2.3%, and China Mobile tacked on 2%.
Other major Asian markets mostly ended higher, as Sydney’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO -0.33% rose 0.5%, and Seoul’s Kospi Composite Index /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 -1.49% gained 1.1%.
However, on the Chinese mainland, the Shanghai Composite Index /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP +0.31% retreated 2.4%, snapping a four-day winning streak. Losses were led by banks after Deutsche Bank and Bank of America Merrill Lynch downgraded several A-share stocks after big gains in the sector. The Wall Street Journal reported.