Most of the Asian equity benchmarks are trading lower in the early deals on Friday despite the slight gains overnight on Wall Street and as crude oil remained rebounded in Asian trades. Investors turned cautious ahead of the release of the closely-watched US monthly jobs report on Friday. The Japanese market is notably higher following the slight gains overnight on Wall Street and as a weaker yen lifted exporters' shares. Meanwhile, South Korea's KOSPI edged higher after the Constitutional Court decided to remove the country's president for the first time in history. Among the other Asian markets, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Taiwan, and Malaysia are lower. Bucking the trend, Singapore is higher.
Hang Seng slipped 4.76 points or 0.02% to 23,496.80, Shanghai Composite dropped 0.86 points or 0.03% to 3,215.88, Jakarta Composite dipped 18.19 points or 0.34% to 5,384.20, Taiwan Weighted decreased 30.64 points or 0.32% to 9,627.97, and FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI was down by 1.99 points or 0.12% to 1,715.43.
On the flip side, Nikkei 225 added 260.88 points or 1.35% to 19,579.46, Straits Times gained 24.97 points or 0.80% to 3,143.81, and KOSPI Index was up by 6.90 points or 0.33% to 2,097.96.