Asian stocks rise
Asian stocks rose in quiet trade Tuesday as dealers took a lead from a jump on Wall Street and some rare positive economic data from the United States amid a slew of grim employment news.
With half the region's markets still closed for the Chinese New Year holiday and many traders staying away for the same reason, there was some bargain hunting as investors took advantage of a poor end to the previous week.
Tokyo jumped nearly five percent after hitting a three-year low Monday.
The Nikkei was helped by a weaker yen, which boosted exporters, as well as an announcement from the government that it will inject public money into companies other than banks to help them through the global economic meltdown.
The news cheered investors who are tentatively awaiting a raft of miserable corporate news over the coming days and weeks.
The dollar traded at 89.56 yen in Tokyo, up from 89.07 in New York late Monday. The euro firmed to 118.31 yen from 117.46.
Sydney added three percent due to stronger resources stocks, while Mumbai gained 3.8 percent despite the central bank lowering the country's growth forecast for this financial year to March.
The markets were helped by a 0.48 percent rise in New York, which had rallied on hopes for a stimulus plan from US President Barack Obama that is going through Congress.
Markets also took confidence from news of a surprise jump in existing US home sales in December, while an index of leading economic indicators rose 0.3 percent, defying expectations of a drop.
However, tens of thousands of job losses from firms including Caterpillar, IBM, Pfizer and General Motors highlighted the depth of the financial crisis.
New Zealand advanced 1.11 percent, Bangkok 1.85 percent and Manila 0.6 percent, while Jakarta added 1.6 percent.