* Nikkei on track for longest daily winning streak since
* Financial stocks, exporters gain ground
By Ayai Tomisawa
TOKYO, Oct 19 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average rose
on Thursday morning to hit a fresh 21-year high and was poised
to scale a 13-day winning streak, as gains in global stocks and
a weaker yen supported investors' risk sentiment.
The Nikkei rose 0.3 percent to 21,430.66 in
midmorning trade, after rising to as much as 21,464.82, the
highest level since 1996. If it ends in positive territory, it
will have posted 13 straight days of gains, the longest winning
streak since 1988.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 23,000 for the
first time on Wednesday, driven by a jump in IBM after it hinted
at a return to revenue growth.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
edged up 0.05 percent, nearing a 10-year peak
scaled on Tuesday.
"Foreign investors' risk sentiment is rising backed by
strength in global shares. They are seen buying Japanese stocks
aggressively for the past two weeks," said Mutsumi Kagawa, chief
global strategist at Rakuten Securities.
Kagawa said that expectations that the ruling bloc will win
the election this weekend also continues to buoy the mood.
The dollar was steady at 112.930 yen after rising 0.6
percent overnight, lifting exporters. Tokyo Electron Ltd
surged 1.0 percent, Panasonic Corp gained 0.9
percent and Honda Motor Co rose 0.7 percent.
Financial stocks also gained ground, with insurers Dai-ichi
Life Holdings soaring 1.5 percent, T&D Holdings
adding 0.8 percent and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group
climbing 1.3 percent.
Meanwhile CME Group and Japan Exchange Group, the operator
of the Tokyo Stock Exchange, announced the launch of
yen-denominated Topix futures contracts to begin trading on CME
Globex in April 2018.
The broader Topix gained 0.4 percent to 1,730.83.
(Editing by Sam Holmes)
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