TSE ends year with a bang and a ceremony

The Tokyo Stock Exchange marked its last trading day of the year with a ceremony on Wednesday, as the benchmark Nikkei Average enjoyed its highest final-day close in 31 years.

The ceremony took place with less than 10 percent of the usual number of participants, in a bid to prevent coronavirus infections.

Kiyota Akira, the Japan Exchange Group CEO, gave a review of the year.

He said market players had been swung around by the pandemic, but the market achieved a V-shaped recovery and trade remained firm overall.

The presidents of newly listed companies rang the bell at the exchange.

The event wrapped up with participants giving with a ceremonial hand clap.

Share prices on the Tokyo Stock Exchange dropped sharply in March as the coronavirus spread.

But in September they were back to pre-pandemic levels, partly because of massive monetary easing and economic support measures.

On Wednesday, Tokyo's benchmark stock index marked its highest final-day close in 31 years.

The Nikkei 225 ended the day at 27,444, its third-highest final-day close on record.

The difference between this year's highest and lowest share prices was about 11,000 points, the second largest gap on record.