TOKYO -- With a major three-day national holiday kicking in tomorrow, Japanese equity traders seemed halfway out the door for most of Tuesday, as stocks gave back early gains in very light trading.


Nikkei 225

index rose 36.28 points to 18,439.36, while the


index, which includes all shares listed on the

Tokyo Stock Exchange's

first section, climbed 7.35 to 1702.58. The


small-cap index gained 2.23, or 2.2%, to 102.97, while the Nikkei


index rose 36.94, or 1.8%, to 2086.55.

The launch of three new mutual funds targeting both growth and value stocks helped provide a solid floor for the market. However, with Tokyo markets closed over the next three days, many traders were closing out positions, or selling

June Nikkei 225 futures

in the afternoon. June futures, which are traded on the

Osaka Stock Exchange

, rose 40 to 18,470.00. Tokyo markets will reopen on Monday.

Even though the

Nasdaq Composite

index bounced higher overnight, tech plays were mixed.


rose 15 yen, or 1.3%, to 1143, while



climbed 38, or 2.7%, to 1427.


(SNE) - Get Report

fell 80 to 12,500.


was flat at 28,590, while

Hikari Tsushin

shed 500, or 2.9%, to 16,800.

Japan Oracle

, which jumped to the TSE's first section from the OTC market on Friday, slipped 1900, or 2.3%, to 80,100.

Seven-Eleven Japan


shed 200, or 1.5%, to 13,100 on worries that a slump in personal spending will halt growth of the firm.

The dollar was trading recently at 108.40 yen.

Hong Kong's

Hang Seng

index, back from a market holiday yesterday, climbed 286.46, or 1.9%, to 15,817.76. Nasdaq's rally overnight helped shares of index heavyweight

China Telecom

(CHL) - Get Report

surge HK$6.00, or 10.7%, to 62.25.

Pacific Century CyberWorks

rose 1.20, or 8.3%, to 15.70, on reports that Japan's Softbank plans to take a 20% stake in a financial portal PCCW plans to set up with American mutual-fund tracker



A tech rally helped Korea's


index surge 27.20, or 3.8%, to 752.29.

SK Telecom

(SKM) - Get Report

climbed 44,000 won, or 14.9%, to 339,000.