Nikkei reaches five-and-a-half year high

<p>The Nikkei is 0.7 per cent higher this morning.</p>

The Nikkei share index has gained 0.7 per cent this morning (May 17th), taking it to its highest level since December 2007.

It has been boosted by investors taking advantage of dips in volatile stocks such as real estates, in an effort to book a quick profit as the yen weakness begins to boost inflation.

Prime minister Shinzo Abe is expected to speak today and announce further economic actions to boost Japanese agriculture, so related stocks were also higher today.

The Nikkei benchmark index closed at 15,183.12 points and has gained 3.6 per cent over the course of this week.

In early trading, it had fallen into negative territory, but the actions of those snapping up real estate stocks – which were hit earlier this week when long-term debt yields increased – sent the market higher.

Since the US dollar broke through the 100 yen barrier last Thursday, the index has advanced by 6.7 per cent.

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