Tokyo: Tokyo investors will focus on a speech by US Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen next week as investor concerns about crises in the Ukraine and Iraq start to ease, brokers said.
"As geopolitical concerns seem subdued for the time being, the market is shifting its focus to Yellen," said Toshikazu Horiuchi, a broker at IwaiCosmo Securities, referring to a US conference where Yellen is to deliver a keynote address.
"We don't expect any surprises, but it's still hard for us to take positions ahead of the event."
Last month Yellen told Congress the Fed would hold its near-zero interest rate policy until the US economy strengthens but may raise rates if the jobs market kept improving.
Concerns over the situation in Ukraine were easing as Russian President Vladimir Putin called for an end to the crisis in the violence-wracked country.
In Iraq, the country's divisive premier Nuri al-Maliki dropped his bid to stay in power, bowing to huge domestic and international pressure as a jihadist-led offensive threatens to tear the country apart.
On Friday, the Nikkei 225 index was flat, adding 0.02 per cent, or 3.77 points, to finish at 15,318.34 yesterday. The benchmark index, which lost 4.80 per cent the previous week, added back 3.65 per cent this week.