HONG KONG- Asian markets mostly rose Monday following a rally on Wall Street as attention turns to the release of key data from Japan and the United States later in the week.
The yen eased slightly against the dollar in early currency deals in response to worse-than-expected Japanese industrial output figures that raise the possibility of further monetary easing by the country’s central bank.
Tokyo jumped 0.90 percent, or 131.80 points, to 14,827.83, Sydney climbed 0.52 percent, or 27.9 points, to 5,394.8 and Seoul added 0.23 percent, or 4.61 points, to 1,985.61.
In the afternoon, Hong Kong was 0.19 percent higher but Shanghai dipped 0.11 percent.
Investors were unmoved by news that North and South Korea had traded live artillery fire across their disputed maritime border Monday, forcing South Korean islanders to take shelter. The exchange came a day after the North drove up tensions by threatening a new nuclear test.
Regional investors took their lead from a positive finish to the week in the United States and Europe.
Wall Street rose after the Commerce Department said US consumer incomes and spending gained for a second straight month in February.
The Dow rose 0.36 percent, the S&P 500 added 0.46 percent and the Nasdaq gained 0.11 percent.
In Europe, London’s FTSE 100, the CAC 40 in Paris and the DAX 30 in Frankfurt jumped after the European Commission said March consumer and business sentiment rose for the 11th month in a row, hitting a 30-month high.