Annual Ceremony Marks End Of Tokyo Trading

Annual ceremony marks end of Tokyo trading

A ceremony marking the last trading day of the year was held at the Tokyo Stock Exchange on Monday after the benchmark Nikkei Average marked its highest final-day close in 29 years.

Leading Kyogen actor Nomura Mansai, who will direct the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, was among those invited.

Akira Kiyota, the head of the Japan Exchange Group, which operates the market, looked back on the year.

He said 2019 has been volatile due to factors, such as the US-China trade friction, that have prevailed since the year before.

But, he said, in retrospect the market started the year poorly and ended it well, so it was a good year overall.

Nomura addressed the participants, saying the "One Team" philosophy of the Japan rugby squad at this year's World Cup left an impression on him.

He said the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics will be staged next year. He expressed his hope that the year will be a fruitful one, with Japan, the world and the entire planet showing that unified "One Team" spirit.

The bell at the exchange was then rung five times to call for rising stock prices for the next year.

The event wrapped up with a ceremonial hand-clap by more than 630 people.