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Asia Markets: Japan stocks leap as yen weakens

A rally in the U.S. dollar weakened the Japanese yen, sending the Nikkei sharply higher Monday morning amidst broader equities weakness elsewhere in Asia.

The Nikkei Stock Average NIK, +2.24% was up 2.2% after the dollar surged, on comments from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen that the case for an increase in short-term interest rates has strengthened in recent months. A weaker yen helps Japanese exports.

There were expectations of hawkish commentary from the Fed and investors were cautious leading up to the speech, analysts said.

“All of the concerns and worries were addressed in this (Fed Chair Yellen’s) speech over the weekend,” said Alex Wijaya, a senior sales trader at CMC Markets.

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