Nikkei hits record high after pension reform announcement

<p>Japan shares extended gains to a seven-year high after Shinzo Abe announced pension reforms.</p>

Japan shares extended gains to a seven-year high today (September 19th) after prime minister Shinzo Abe unveiled plans to reform the country's pension system as soon as possible.

"I believe GPIF (Government Pension Investment Fund) reforms are extremely important …. I would like to review its portfolio as soon as possible," he said in a speech. 

Investor mood was also boosted by a positive lead from Wall Street and the yen sudden drop after the Scottish voters rejected a bid for independence and averted a break-up of the United Kingdom.

In addition, sentiment was also lifted by the Federal Reserve decision to keep interest rates low.

The Nikkei share average rose 1.8 per cent to 16,354.23, the highest point since 2007. The broader Topix gained 1.4 per cent to 1,335.71, and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 added 1.5 per cent to 12,121.06. 

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