SINGAPORE — Stocks in Japan looked set to trade higher at the Friday open after stocks on Wall Street cruised to new record highs overnight.

Futures pointed to a higher open for Japanese stocks. The Nikkei futures contract in Chicago was at 27,630 while its counterpart in Osaka was at 27,580. That compared against the Nikkei 225’s last close at 27,490.13.

Meanwhile, shares in Australia advanced in early trading, with the S&P/ASX 200 up around 0.2%.

In coronavirus developments, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga declared a state of emergency in Tokyo and three other areas on Thursday in a bid to combat a rise in coronavirus infections.

The World Health Organization on Thursday warned of a tipping point in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, amid fears over more infectious variants of the virus that have contributed to a surge of infections.

Overnight on Wall Street, the Nasdaq Composite popped 2.6% to close at 13,067.48 while the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 211.73 points to end its trading day at 31,041.13. The S&P 500 gained 1.5% to close at 3,803.79.

Thursday’s gains market the Nasdaq’s first-ever close above 13,000 and was also the first time the Dow and S&P 500 finished a session above 31,000 and 3,800, respectively.

The U.S. Congress confirmed the election of Joe Biden as president early Thursday, a day after supporters of Donald Trump invaded the U.S. Capitol.

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 89.818 after seeing levels below 89.4 earlier this week.

The Japanese yen traded at 103.79 per dollar after weakening from levels below 103.2 against the greenback yesterday. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7769, having seen levels above $0.78 earlier this week.

— CNBC’s Sam Meredith contributed to this report.


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