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Tokyo stock market's main index surges 2.57 percent on yen's weakness

Tokyo stock market's main index surges 2.57 percent on yen's weakness

Japanese stocks rose Friday as exporters rallied on the yen's weakness against the dollar and banks climbed on news that the U.S. government was working on a policy to ease subprime woes.
Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 stock index added 415.27 points, or 2.57 percent, to close at 16,569.09 points on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. Thursday, the index rose 0.9 percent.
The broader Topix index, which includes all shares on the exchange's first section, added 40.02 points, or 2.55 percent, to 1,608.25 points.
Exporters like Toyota Motor moved higher on a weaker yen, which helps inflate overseas earnings and makes exports less expensive. Banks advanced on news that U.S. President Bush was to announce initiatives later Friday to help overstretched U.S. homeowners cope with the housing slump.
Global markets have been volatile in recent weeks since the emergence of the U.S. subprime mortgage crisis and the resulting tightening of credit.
Gainers in Japan Friday included Toyota, which climbed 3.68 percent to 6,760 yen (US$58.28; euro42.82), and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., which added 1.83 percent to 1.11 million yen (US$9,568.97; euro7,030.84).
Commodity-related shares such as trading companies and nonferrous metal companies also gained ground. Mitsui and Co. rose 6.64 percent to 2,410 yen (US$20.78; euro15.27).
"Trading houses are among foreign investors' favorite names," said Motomi Hiratsuka, head of Japan client coverage at BNP Paribas.
The U.S. dollar was trading at 116.16 yen midafternoon, up from 115.74 yen late Thursday in New York. The euro rose to US$1.3668 from US$1.3637.