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Japanese shares are expected to make further gains next week, with sentiment remaining strong after stocks hit levels not seen since before the 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers, brokers said.
Over the week, the benchmark Nikkei 225 index jumped 677.24 points, or 5.84 percent, to 12,283.62, topping levels it last held before the financial crisis.
The broader Topix index of all first section shares rose 36.17 points, or 3.67 percent, to 1,020.50.
"There may be some profit-taking at some point, but the overall upward trend is likely to continue for now," said Hirokazu Fujiki, a strategist with Okasan Securities.
An equity trading director at a foreign brokerage told Dow Jones Newswires: "The market looks overbought, but the upward momentum is too powerful for many players to stand in the way."
Japanese exporters, a key driver of the country's economy, are likely to continue to benefit from the weak yen, which makes their products more competitive overseas and swells the value of repatriated profits.
The yen is expected to slide further in anticipation of more aggressive monetary easing from the Bank of Japan, which will likely be headed by Haruhiko Kuroda, an advocate of such policies, at its next rate-setting meeting in April.
The central bank left its policy unchanged on Thursday, the last meeting for current governor Masaaki Shirakawa.
Kuroda, a finance veteran, has in the past criticised the BoJ for not doing enough to boost the world's number three economy and is a supporter of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's plan of ratcheting up spending to drive growth.
"The yen will remain under selling pressure ahead of next month's policy meeting, which will sustain the current buying sentiment in the Tokyo stock market," Okasan's Fujiki said.
Among key economic indicators scheduled for next week are the US consumer price index for February and US industrial output for February, both to be released on Friday.