LOS ANGELES – Japanese stocks jumped in early Thursday moves, with tech and industrial exporters among the best performers ahead of a key press briefing from new Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda. Returning from a one-day holiday, the market caught up with some of the previous day's gains elsewhere in Asia, as the Nikkei Stock Average climbed 1.4% to 12,636.72, with the Topix also gaining 1.4%. The moves came as Kuroda -- seen as more dovish than his predecessor -- was expected to discuss some of his policy views on how to rid Japan of deflation, likely pushing the yen lower in the process. Exporters helped led Thursday's gains, with Sony Corp. rising 3.1%, Hitachi Ltd. adding 2.2%, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. improving by 2.6%, and Fanuc Corp. surging 3.5%. The export majors largely shrugged off showing a surprise drop in Japan's February exports compared to a year earlier, even as the total trade deficit shrank. Retailers also saw strong interest, as Takashimaya Co. jumped 3.2%, J. Front Retailing Co. rallied 3.9%, and Seven & I Holdings Co. traded 3.1% higher.
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