HONG KONG (AFP) - Asian stocks surged on Wednesday as an energised Tokyo anticipated strong corporate earnings and investors gained confidence in banking shares. Japans Nikkei index ended the day up 2.70 percent, or 256.42 points, at 9,753.27, boosted by a strong earnings report from electronics giant Canon and a weakening yen, which helps exporters. The Topix index of first-section shares gained 2.29pc. Canon powered 5.68 percent higher after reporting that its April-June net profit had more than quadrupled year-on-year, while Sony, which publishes official results on Thursday, was up 2.71 percent. Were really starting to see buying from earnings optimism, starting with Canon and Sony, Masayoshi Yano, a senior market analyst at Meiwa Securities in Tokyo, told Dow Jones Newswires. Mizuho Financial and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial both jumped by 2.87 percent and 3.58 percent respectively after international regulators appeared to water down plans for new standards aimed at improving the sectors resilience to crises. Analysts said the Basel Committee on Banking Supervisions new rules dubbed Basel III would be more relaxed on the quality of capital and the amount of assets required to back lending than earlier planned. That also lifted bank stocks in Hong Kong, with HSBC ending the day up 2.6 percent and Standard Chartered up 3.29 percent. Hong Kongs Hang Seng Index breached the milestone of 21,000, closing up 0.56 percent, or 117.79 points, at 21,091.18. There were also gains for mainland lenders after Chinas banking regulator defended the sector against charges it is overloaded with bad loans to local governments. Shanghai ended up 2.26 percent, or 58.30 points, at 2,633.66, its highest close since May 28, after an upbeat assessment from the central bank on Tuesday suggested the slowdown in Chinas economic growth would stabilise. Property developers rose on optimism that further measures to tighten the sector were unlikely, with China Vanke gaining 2.9 percent and China Merchants Property Development rising 3.1 percent. The optimism came despite an IMF report that prodded China to take additional steps to cool its real estate market. London-based Capital Economics said: There is widespread agreement that (Chinas) policy tightening is off the cards. Sydney closed up 0.72 percent, or 32.5 points, at 4,529.9 despite a wobble in the price of the Australian dollar after lower-than-expected inflation data for the second quarter. The index earlier touched a five-week high of 4,530.6. Miner BHP Billiton rose 1.1 percent and rival Rio Tinto 1.4 percent, ignoring a 1.2 percent fall in London Metal Exchange copper prices overnight. US stocks were mixed, with the Dow inching up 0.12 percent, buoyed by results from Lockheed Martin and DuPont, but with sentiment dented by a report from The Conference Board that consumer confidence had declined in July. The Boards index fell to 50.4 points from 54.3 last month, reaching its lowest level since February.