TOPIX posted a positive return for two consecutive months. The Japanese equity market started with a rise on expectations for an early halt in U.S. interest rate hikes. Additionally U.S. employment data (for January) exceeded market expectations. Subsequently, the U.S. Wholesale Price Index for January was higher than market expectations, which raised caution about U.S. monetary tightening and global stock markets including the Japanese equity market. However, it ended the month on a positive note.
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