Nikkei was up 1.7%, Canon was up 2.3% in Japan to 7660 yen.
"Automakers and technology shares gained after Hirakawa, Tokyo-based equity strategist at UBS's brokerage unit in Tokyo, said in a note to clients that he expects the Nikkei to exceed its 5 1/2 year high reached on Feb. 6.
``Japanese stocks will probably surpass February's lofty levels,'' he said. Automakers, machinery and electronic makers are ``sectors that we think could enjoy investment appeal.'' "