Hong Kong: Asian markets mostly fell on Friday at the end of a broadly positive week, with Tokyo dipping on the back of a pick-up in the yen after the Bank of Japan (BoJ) held off any new measures to boost the economy.
Wall Street provided a strong lead following upbeat jobs data, but the South Korean index was dragged by tech giant Samsung Electronics despite posting a surge in net profit.
Tokyo fell 0.30%, or 41.95 points, to 13,884.13 and Seoul lost 0.36%, or 7.05 points, to 1,944.55, while Sydney eased 0.10%, or 4.9 points, to close at 5,097.5.
Shanghai slipped 0.97%, ending down 21.40 points at a four-month low of 2,177.91 but Hong Kong added 0.65%, or 146.47 points, to 22,547.71.
Japan’s Nikkei suffered some selling at the end of another impressive week that saw it add around five% thanks to the yen’s continued weakness.
The yen, however, enjoyed a rally on Friday after the BoJ said its policy board had voted unanimously to stand pat on policy.
The meeting was the first since it unveiled a huge stimulus package at the start of April aimed at kickstarting the economy and ending years of deflation.
In European trade the dollar slipped to 98.62 yen, from 99.29 yen late Thursday in New York.
The dollar has been unable to breach the 100 yen marker, which it last saw in April 2009, despite moving within a whisker of it earlier this week.
The euro bought $1.3020 and 128.37 yen compared with $1.3009 and 129.16 yen in New York Thursday afternoon.
US shares gave regional dealers a positive cue after the Labor Department said claims for unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level since mid-March. Initial claims came in at 339,000, down from the prior week’s revised reading of 362,000.
On Wall Street the Dow climbed 0.17%, the S&P 500 rose 0.40% and the Nasdaq jumped 0.62%.
New York buying was also helped by strong earnings from the likes of Dow Chemical and package shipper UPS, although ExxonMobil and industrial conglomerate 3M came in below expectations.
In Seoul Samsung dipped despite reporting that net profit soared 41.6% to a record 7.15 trillion won ($6.4 billion) in the first quarter of 2013, driven by strong smartphone sales.
On oil markets New York’s main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in June, dropped 60 cents to $93.04 a barrel in the afternoon and Brent North Sea crude for June shed 57 cents to $102.84.
An ounce of gold fetched $1,465.00 at 1100 GMT, compared with $1,446.51 late Thursday.
In other markets:
—Singapore rose 0.33%, or 11.16 points, to 3,348.87.
United Overseas Bank added 0.81% to Sg$21.08, while Olam dropped 0.30% to Sg$1.67.
—Taipei ended flat, edging up 0.31 points to 8,022.06.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. rose 1.4% to Tw$108.5 while smartphone maker HTC fell 1.6% to Tw$277.5.
—Manila closed 0.43% higher, adding 29.98 points to 7,025.44.
Melco Crown (Philippines) Resorts rose 2.92% to 14.10 pesos, while Alliance Global Group added 1.63% to 25 pesos and Philippine Long Distance Telephone put on 0.61% to 2,992 pesos.
—Wellington rose 0.21%, or 9.73 points, to 4,548.71.
Software provider Xero was up 6.15% at NZ$13.80 and Chorus rose 0.37% to NZ$2.74, while Fletcher Building dipped 0.57% to NZ$8.66.
—Jakarta ended down 0.32%, or 16.02 points, at 4,978.51.
Mobile phone provider Indosat fell 2.50% to 5,850 rupiah, while Bank Negara Indonesia rose 1.90% to 5,350 rupiah.
—Kuala Lumpur added 0.29%, or 4.95 points, to 1,711.29.
Astro rose 2.8% to 2.95 ringgit while Petronas Chemicals Group added 0.2% to end at 6.48 ringgit. UEM Land Holdings fell 1.5% to 2.65 ringgit.
—Bangkok added 0.55%, or 8.68 points, to 1,582.93.
Convenience store operator CP All rose 6.71% to 43.75 baht, while BIG C Supercenter jumped 7.93% to 245.00 baht.
—Mumbai closed down 0.62% or 120.13 points at 19,286.72.