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Tokyo Stock Exchange

Japan Post companies net $12B in biggest IPO, shares soar

Shares of Japan Post surged nearly 26 percent in their trading debut Wednesday after the company and its banking and insurance units raised a combined 1.44 trillion yen ($11.9 billion) in the world's biggest initial public offering this year.

The long awaited sale of shares in the state-owned company was the biggest since Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holdings raised $25 billion in its IPO in September 2014.

The Japan Post sale is meant to tease out some of the more than $14 trillion that Japanese have squirreled away in savings accounts. Some IPO funds will help pay for rebuilding from the 2011 tsunami disaster.

The government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe...