Tokyo stocks open 0.18% higher

TOKYO (AFP) - Tokyo stocks opened 0.18 per cent higher on Friday, extending gains after a six-day winning streak as Wall Street posted a record close.

The Nikkei 225 index added 25.94 points to 14,707.66 at the start of trading.

Just before the market opened, Japan's government released a mixed bag of economic data which showed April factory output and household spending were lower than expected while the jobless rate stayed at the lowest level in nearly seven years.

The battle between two giant meat processors over hot dog maker Hillshire Brands helped boost Wall Street and lifted the S&P 500 to a record on Thursday.

Investors shrugged off the government's report that the US economy contracted a surprising 1.0 per cent in the first quarter as economists said a rebound was already firmly under way.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 0.39 per cent at 16,698.74 while the broad-based S&P 500 added 0.54 per cent to 1,920.03, a new closing high for the index.

Currency rates hardly moved after the Japanese data.

The dollar fetched 101.73 yen early Friday, compared with 101.78 yen in New York Thursday afternoon.

The euro bought US$1.3598 and 138.36 yen against US$1.3601 and 138.44 yen.

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