Around the World's Markets: Tokyo

JAPANESE STOCKS edged higher in cautious trade in Tokyo, with the Nikkei index closing up 49.74 points at 13,952.40. Nikkei March futures finished 100 points higher at 13,960.

Traders were encouraged by the recent weakening of the yen against the dollar, and global manufacturers such as Sony were among the major share gainers.

The yen slipped further against the dollar in London trade after newspaper reports suggested that Washington was leaning on Tokyo to loosen monetary policy.