Tokyo stocks open 0.56% higher

PHOTO: Tokyo stocks open 0.56% higher

TOKYO - Tokyo stocks opened 0.56 per cent higher on Friday as bargain-buying kicked in following a sell-off in the previous session on concerns over Cyprus and a strengthening yen.

The Nikkei index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange rose 69.57 points to 12,405.53 in the first minutes of trade.

"With so many bourses on holiday Friday, Japanese trading activity is likely to be quite subdued," SMBC Nikko Securities general manager of equities Hiroichi Nishi told Dow Jones Newswires.

"Investors in this market are resilient, however, and have shown the tendency to buy on dips."

Many markets are closed for public holidays including in Australia and Singapore. Wall Street will also be closed on Friday.

In New York Thursday the S&P 500 climbed to an all-time closing record in a sign of growing confidence in the US economy.

The narrower Dow Jones Industrial Average, which burst through its October 2007 record three weeks ago, propelled to yet another new closing peak of 14,578.54, up 52.38 points (0.36 per cent).

Market watchers credited steadily improving US economic data, solid corporate earnings and continued high liquidity from the Federal Reserve's stimulus measures.

The euro bounced back in New York as Cyprus re-opened its banks amid relative calm.

In early Tokyo trade it fetched US$1.2815 (S$1.59), slightly up from US$1.2814 in New York late Thursday, and 120.74 yen (S$1.59) from 120.64 yen.

The dollar firmed to 94.26 yen, from 94.12 yen in New York, ahead of a Bank of Japan meeting next week that is expected to see the launch of more aggressive easing by the central bank.