Japanese stocks rose, paring a second weekly decline on the Topix index, as the yen weakened against the dollar and U.S. data on retail sales and jobs bolstered confidence in the strength of the world’s biggest economy.

The Topix index gained 0.2 percent to 1,652.89 as of 9:01 a.m. in Tokyo, heading for a 0.9 percent weekly decline. The Nikkei 225 Stock Average advanced 0.2 percent to 20,423.43. The yen traded at 123.58 per dollar after falling 0.6 percent on Thursday. Japanese trading may be volatile on Friday as equity-index options and futures contracts expire.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rose 0.2 percent in New York on Thursday after data showed sales at retailers picked up in May and applications for unemployment benefits remained below 300,000 for a 14th straight week, a sign of labor market strength. E-mini futures on the S&P 500 slipped 0.1 percent.

The Japanese yen is weak, though still around an appropriate level to reflect Japan’s fundamentals, said Naoyuki Shinohara, a former top currency official at the finance ministry.

Source : Bloomberg