The FINANCIAL -- The Japanese stock market opened higher on July 2, extending gains from the previous session following the positive lead overnight from Wall Street. Additionally, a weaker yen boosted exporters' stocks, according to Nasdaq.
In late-morning trades, the benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is adding 233.16 points or 1.15 percent to 20,562.48, off a high of 20,601.73 earlier.
Among the major exporters, Sony Corp. (SNE) is up 0.8 percent, Sharp is adding more than 3 percent, Nikon is advancing 0.6 percent and Panasonic is higher by more than 1 percent. Meanwhile, Toshiba is edging down 0.05 percent.
In the tech sector, Casio Computer is adding 0.4 percent, Fanuc is advancing 0.5 percent, and Kyocera is gaining more than 1 percent.
Among auto stocks, Toyota (TM) is higher by 0.5 percent and Suzuki is edging up 0.02 percent, while Honda (HMC) and Mazda are gaining more than 2 percent each.
In the banking space, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial (MTU) is adding 1 percent, Mizuho Financial (MFG) is up 0.8 percent and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is advancing more than 1 percent.
Among the other major gainers, Fast Retailing and Sony Financial Holdings are gaining almost 3 percent each, while Obayashi Corp. is adding almost 2 percent. Japan Tobacco and Sumitomo Heavy Industries are declining more than 1 percent each.
On the economic front, the Bank of Japan said that the monetary base in Japan surged 34.2 percent on year in June, coming in at 325.047 trillion yen. That follows the 35.6 percent spike in May.
In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the lower 123 yen-range on July 2, up from Wednesday's close in the upper122 yen range in Tokyo.
On Wall Street, stocks closed higher on July 1 as the markets benefited from a positive reaction to the latest news about Greece as well as some upbeat U.S. economic data. While Greece failed to make a 1.6 billion euro payment to the International Monetary Fund, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras sent a letter indicating he will accept most of the demands made by the country's creditors.
The Dow advanced 138.40 points or 0.8 percent to 17,757.91, the Nasdaq rose 26.26 points or 0.5 percent to 5,013.12 and the S&P 500 climbed 14.31 points or 0.7 percent to 2,077.42.
The major European markets all moved sharply higher on Wednesday. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index surged up by 1.3 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index soared by 1.9 percent and 2.2 percent, respectively.
U.S. crude oil plummeted to end at a more than two-month low on Wednesday, after a weekly official oil report from the Energy Information Administration showed U.S. inventories to have increased more than expected last week, even as reports indicate the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to have exceeded its output target for June.
Crude Oil futures for August delivery, the most actively traded contract, plunged $2.51 or 4.2 percent to settle at $56.96 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange on July 1.