CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - Asian stocks ended mixed on Tuesday, with Japanese markets leading regional gains, as comments from an influential Federal Reserve official that rising wages would boost U.S. inflation helped lift the dollar to a three-week high against the Japanese yen.
While another record close on Wall Street helped underpin investor sentiment, falling oil prices and uncertainty ahead of a decision by U.S. index provider MSCI on whether to include China A-shares in its Emerging Market Index served to keep the underlying mood somewhat cautious.
China's Shanghai Composite index slid 4.36 points or 0.14 percent to 3,140.01 while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index was down 81 points or 0.31 percent at 25,843 in late trade.
Japanese shares rallied as the dollar extended gains against the yen and tech stocks followed their Wall Street peers higher.
The Nikkei average ended up 162.66 points or 0.81 percent at 20,230.41 after probing its highest levels in nearly two years in early trade. The broader Topix index climbed 0.70 percent to 1,617.25.
Sharp Corp shares jumped 7.7 percent after the company said it would apply for relisting on the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange. Iwaki & Co rallied almost 12 percent and Askul Corp advanced 8.9 percent after hiking their outlook.
Australian shares fell as a gauge of consumer confidence weakened and the RBA minutes of the June board meeting showed policymakers are concerned about soaring household debt in the country's red-hot property market and weak wages growth.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index fell 47.90 points or 0.83 percent to 5,757.30, with banks and property developers bearing the brunt of the selling. The broader All Ordinaries index shed 43.20 points or 0.74 percent to finish at 5,792.30.
The big four banks dropped between 0.7 percent and 1.9 percent after Moody's Investors Services downgraded their credit ratings, citing elevated risks in the household sector. Retail landlord Scentre Group lost 2.7 percent and GPT Group declined 2.1 percent on worries about their outlooks.
Energy majors Woodside Petroleum, Santos, Oil Search and Origin Energy dropped 1-3 percent after oil prices fell about 1 percent on Monday to hit seven-month lows. Mining giants BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto ended with modest losses.
OrotonGroup soared 4.4 percent on saying it has received expressions of interest that could involve a sale of the company.
New Zealand shares closed marginally lower as caution prevailed ahead of the GlobalDairyTrade(GDT) price auction due tonight and Reserve Bank's monetary policy review, scheduled to be held on Wednesday.
Investors paid little attention to the survey figures from ANZ bank showing that New Zealand's consumer confidence improved for the second straight month in June. The latest index score was the highest in five months.
Seoul shares ended little changed, with the benchmark Kospi closing down 1.67 points or 0.07 percent at 2,369.23.
Singapore's Straits Times index was down 0.1 percent after commodity trader Noble Group said it had extended a key debt deadline.
Indian shares were marginally higher, Indonesia's Jakarta Composite index was rising 0.6 percent and the Taiwan Weighted advanced 0.7 percent, while Malaysia's KLSE Composite was down 0.4 percent.
U.S. stocks rose overnight as technology stocks rebounded from recent losses and expectations of further policy tightening from the Federal Reserve helped lift financials.
The Dow rose 0.7 percent and the S&P 500 added 0.8 percent to close at fresh record highs, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rallied as much as 1.4 percent.
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