TOKYO, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Japanese stocks rose on Thursday as investors who wanted to limit risk bought into defensive shares.
The Nikkei share average gained 1.2 percent to close at 18,096.90.
Japanese manufacturers' confidence worsened in October, a Reuters poll showed, adding to fears of recession as well as speculation about possible fresh stimulus from the Bank of Japan.
The pharmaceutical sector added 2.7 percent, highlighting a move to defensive shares from cyclicals after Wall Street fell on Wednesday.
Asahi Kasei Corp tumbled 13.6 percent after announcing its subsidiary company had performed faulty installation of a portion of foundation piles in work subcontracted by Sumitomo Mitsui Construction for a Yokohama apartment complex.
The broader Topix added 1.4 percent to close at 1,490.72 while the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 gained 1.3 percent to 13,349.87. (Reporting by Joshua Hunt; Editing by Richard Borsuk)