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Japan's Nikkei edges up on corporate outlook optimism

·2 min read

TOKYO, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei index edged higher on Monday, underpinned by gains in Bandai Namco and other shares that reported robust outlook, while caution ahead of the release of U.S. consumer prices report limited gains.

The Nikkei share average rose 0.23% to 28,241.09 by the midday break, after opening lower. The broader Topix inched up 0.05% to 1,948.16.

On Friday, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq ended lower, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained, after a solid jobs report torpedoed recent optimism that the Federal Reserve might let up its aggressive campaign to reign in decades-high inflation.

Data showed U.S. employers hired far more workers than expected in July, the 19th straight month of payrolls expansion, with the unemployment rate falling to a pre-pandemic low of 3.5%.

Investors are now awaiting June U.S. consumer prices report due on Wednesday, which could see a slight pullback in headline growth, but likely a further acceleration in core inflation.

"Wall Street had a mixed reaction to the payroll data so it is hard for investors to make an active bets in Japan. They are awaiting for the U.S. CPI data before making any active bets," said Takatoshi Itoshima, strategist at Pictet Asset Management Japan.

"As long as Fed's policy decision is based on economic data, investors would have to keep waiting new key indicators to make a decision for their bets."

In Japan, Bandai Namco advanced 3.96% and was one of the top boost for the Nikkei after the game maker raised its half-year profit forecast.

Suzuki Motor surged 8.56 after the automaker reported a 36.8% jump in its latest quarterly operating profit.

Canon rose 3.73% after the camera and office equipment maker announced its second share buyback this year.

Drug maker Daiichi Sankyo rose 5.08% and was the top gainer among the top 30 core Topix names, followed by Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, which rose 1.67%,

Insurer Tokio Marine Holdings Inc fell 4.79% and was the worst performer among the top 30 core Topix names.

(Reporting by Junko Fujita)