Nikkei closed 0.21 percent higher Thursday on positive Chinese data. The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average closed up 18.58 points, or 0. 21 percent, at 8,946.87. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was up 0.99 point, or 0. 13 percent, at 743.32. Gainers included sea transport firms, real estate developers and paper makers. Decliners included the mining companies, nonferrous metal makers and electronics makers. The turnover was about 1,056.6 billion yen (about 13.21 billion U.S. dollars).