Tokyo’s benchmark Nikkei share index briefly rose above the 20,000-yen level on Friday for the first time in nearly 15 years.

Investors rushed to place buy orders shortly after the market opened in the morning.

The Nikkei average of 225 selected issues rose above 20,000 at one point — the highest intra-day figure since April 2000.

The index ended the day’s session at 19,907 — down 30 points from Thursday’s close.

The broader-based TOPIX index finished 4 points lower at 1,589.

Analysts say Japanese exporters are predicting improved earnings, thanks to the recent depreciation of the yen.

They say a recovery in consumer spending is also expected due to wage hikes, mainly among large companies.

Market sources say there is a view that the 20,000-yen mark is a stepping stone to further gains. But some participants say economic trends and corporate earnings in Japan and the US should be closely monitored in the coming days.

© NHK