Asian markets rose Friday as investor sentiment turned positive with hopes that the U.S. jobs data will be encouraging and the Bank of Japan will announce a policy to support the global economic growth.
Japan's Nikkei Stock Average was up 0.42 percent or 37.36 points to 8861.95. Among the major gainers were Toho Zinc Co Ltd (4.44 percent), Sumco Corp (3.71 percent) and Shionogi & Co Ltd (3.58 percent).
Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.39 percent or 81.98 points to 20989.93. Among the major gainers were Li & Fung Ltd (1.70 percent) and PetroChina Co Ltd (1.40 percent).
South Korea’s KOSPI Composite Index rose 0.32 percent or 6.47 points to 1999.15. Shares of Samsung Electronics Co Ltd dropped 0.37 percent and those of LG Electronics Inc rose 0.43 percent.
India's BSE Sensex remained flat. Among the major gainers were HDIL (2.53 percent), Indian Bank (2.18 percent) and Pantaloon Retail (2.07 percent).
In China, markets are closed Friday for holiday.
Investors are likely to focus on the U.S. nonfarm payrolls report Friday. The report, which measures the change in the number of people employed during the previous month, excluding the farming industry, is expected to increase 113,000 in September, up from 96,000 in August.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics will also release its unemployment report, which measures the percentage of the total workforce that was unemployed and actively seeking employment during the previous month. The September unemployment rate is expected to marginally rise to 8.2 percent from 8.1 percent in August.
Market players will also be keenly watching the policy decision to be announced by the Bank of Japan Friday. The central bank is expected to keep its monetary policy unchanged. The Board is expected to shift the emphasis away from further easing monetary conditions to enhancing the growth potential of the economy.
In India, the cabinet’s approval for bills to raise foreign direct investment in insurance and pension sectors boosted the markets.
To contact the editor, e-mail: