Japanese stocks rose, with the Topix index jumping for the first time in four days, as a weaker yen boosted exporters while investors awaited a policy meeting by the European Central Bank.
The Topix added 1.2 percent to 1,348.68 as of 9:03 a.m. in Tokyo, with all but one of the 33 industry groups rising. The gauge fell 3.1 percent over the previous three sessions, after rallying 15 percent in three weeks. The Nikkei 225 Stock Average advanced 1.2 percent to 16,834.17 on Thursday. The yen traded at 113.29 per dollar after falling 0.7 percent on Wednesday. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index climbed 0.5 percent on Wednesday ahead of the ECB meeting.
The ECB on Thursday and the Federal Reserve’s meeting next week may provide more insight on the potential for further stimulus and the trajectory of interest rates. The Bank of Japan will also decide on policy on March 15.
West Texas Intermediate crude climbed 4.9 percent to $38.29 per barrel on Wednesday after the Energy Information Administration said gasoline supplies fell last week, more than analyst estimates.
Futures on the S&P 500 were little changed. The underlying equity gauge’s gain on Wednesday came amid speculation central banks will continue to provide stimulus to bolster sluggish global growth.