Japan's Nikkei marks sixth day of gains

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Nikkei 225 Index

Last Updated at 20 Mar 2018, 01:45 GMT Nikkei 225 three month chart
value change %
21294.21 -

Japanese shares saw their sixth consecutive day of gains on Friday, marking their longest winning streak since August.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 closed up 0.2% to 17,920.45 points, which was its best finish since July 2007.

The dollar also rose past the 120-yen mark for the first time in seven-and-a-half years.

The rest of Asia traded mixed after the European Central Bank (ECB) decided not to expand its stimulus programme.

In a meeting on Thursday, the ECB put off a possible full quantitative easing programme until early next year.

Investors also kept a close an eye on US jobs data due later in the day for signs of growth in the world's largest economy.

In China, Hong Kong's Hang Seng index rose 0.9% to 24,035.98, adding to the previous session's big gains, while the Shanghai Composite was down 0.3% at 2,891.4.

In Australia, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 closed down 0.6% at 5,335.3, dragged lower by mining and energy firms.

Shares of mining services firm Bradken jumped more than 36% after receiving a 872m Australian dollar ($731m; £467m) takeover approach from buyout firms Pacific Equity Partners and Bain Capital.

South Korean shares ended flat after the country's trade ministry saying that exports were likely to grow 2.8% in 2014 to a record $575bn (£367bn).

The ministry forecast that South Korea would post a trade surplus of about $45bn this year, also the largest on record.

The benchmark Kospi index finished at 1,986.62.

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