Tokyo stocks close higher after Christmas sell-off

The Nikkei 225 fell 4.2 percent to 19,310.90 in Tokyo as of 10 a.m. Tuesday the first time the blue-chip stock gauge has traded below 20,000 since September 2017

Japan’s Nikkei crashes 5% as US markets see worst December since Great Depression

The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, rose 20.80 points, or 1.47 percent, at 1,436.35.

Sawada said, "Last week there were rumors that Trump may remove Powell but the latest remarks helped to ease such concerns somewhat".

On the heels of the USA markets crash, Nikkei 225, which has been slowly sliding downward over the past weeks, dropped sharply to 19,144 on open Tuesday, down 20percent from its October 2 peak.

The Nikkei index's steep rise came after nosediving over 5 percent to slip below the psychologically important 20,000 mark Tuesday. Yet, the markets need a catalyst, such as an end to the United States government shutdown or a positive outcome from trade negotiations between the USA and China, so any rebound may wait until after New Year, he said.

"There's a lot of uncertainty, and that's one of the biggest things that the market doesn't like", Andrew Sullivan, a Hong Kong-based market economist, told CNN. USA firms are "the greatest in the world and they're doing really well". The S&P 500 plunged nearly 3 percent to end at a 20-month low on Monday. So I think it's a tremendous opportunity to buy. JGBs gained broadly, with the benchmark 10-year yield falling to zero percent for the first time since September 2017.

China stocks fell on Tuesday morning and the Shanghai index approached a four-year low, tracking a global sell-off as investors were rattled by Trump's attack on the US Federal Reserve and its chairman Jerome Powell, following mounting concern in Washington at the president's foreign and military policies.

"They're raising interest rates too fast because they think the economy is so good", Trump said.

The fall followed a brutal holiday-shortened session on Wall Street that saw US stocks sink for a fourth straight session as investors took little heart from efforts by US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to reassure them.

Mnuchin was widely panned by market watchers over a phone call on Sunday with the six biggest USA banks, reporting on Twitter that the six CEOs have "ample liquidity" available.

In Asian markets, Japan's Nikkei swung between gains and losses Wednesday before closing up almost 1%.