Nikkei rebounds on bargain-hunting, mining sector remains weak


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TOKYO, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei share average ended higher on Thursday, taking back some ground lost in the previous session as investors snapped up bargains after the benchmark index skidded its most in 8-1/2 months The Nikkei .N225 finished up 1.45 percent, or 320.99 points, at 22,498.03, following its biggest fall since March the previous day, when it broke key technical support at its 25-day moving average. Index heavyweight Fast Retailing 9983.T added 2.37 percent. Pharmaceutical shares .IPHAM.T added 1.04 percent, while securities shares .ISECU.T were up 0.61 percent. Oil shares .IPETE.T added 1 percent after crude oil futures steadied following an overnight sell-off. O/R But mining shares .IMING.T slumped 0.9 percent, continuing their weakness as the price of copper CMCU3 wallowed at low levels after dropping more than 4 percent on Tuesday, its biggest daily fall in almost 2-1/2 years. Shares of Advantest Corp 6857.T rose 1.76 percent, after Nikkei reported that the chip company's fiscal year operating profit is seen reaching 20 billion yen ($177.87 million).*:nFWN1O60XH The broader Topix .TOPX rose 1.18 percent, or 20.83 points, to 1,786.25, while the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 .JPXNK400 rose 1.17 percent, or 183.51 points, to 15,825.72. (Reporting by Tokyo markets team; Editing by Jacqueline Wong and Eric Meijer) ((; +81 3 6441 1870; Reuters Messaging: Keywords: JAPAN STOCKS/CLOSE

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