By Laura He, MarketWatch
HONG KONG (MarketWatch) — Japan stocks rose further on Friday, with yen strengthening against the greenback after the country’s finance minister expressed concerns about the currency’s recent sharp drop.
The Nikkei Average /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK -0.39% added to previous gains and closed up 0.3%. For the week, the index posted a 0.8% loss. The broader Topix index /zigman2/quotes/210598092/delayed JP:180460 -0.20% edged 0.2% higher on Friday, ending the week flat.
Meanwhile, the yen /zigman2/quotes/210561789/realtime/sampled USDJPY -0.0076% rebounded to ¥117.67 per dollar from a seven-year low of ¥118.98 per dollar on Thursday, after Japan’s Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Taro Aso said that the decline of the currency in the past week has been too fast.
Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe dissolved the lower house of parliament to pave the way for an early election on Dec. 14.
Market movers included camera maker Nikon Corp. /zigman2/quotes/203281219/delayed JP:7731 -7.31% , advancing 3%, industrial-robot manufacturer Fanuc Corporation /zigman2/quotes/202054799/delayed JP:6954 -0.22% , up 1.3%, and media conglomerate Sony Corporation /zigman2/quotes/201361720/delayed JP:6758 +0.67% , higher by 1%.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI -1.60% snapped a four-day losing streak and recovered 0.4%. However, the index still suffered a weekly loss of 2.7%.
In other Asian markets, Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO -0.62% dipped 0.2%, while mainland China’s Shanghai Composite Index /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP -0.96% rose 1.4%, and South Korea’s Kospi Composite Index /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 +0.39% moved up 0.4%.