Asian markets closed mostly higher Monday, as a stronger U.S. dollar cheered investors and lifted exporters. Both Australia and Japan closed up with Australia gaining almost 1 percent.
Oil's relentless surge to a new peak above $124 weighed on Asian shares Friday, while a stronger yen pressured Japanese exporters, such as Toyota Motor.
The news out of Tokyo should not come as a surprise. Toyota, running neck and neck with GM to become the world's largest automaker, is running a little slower. The first quarter earnings make sense given the auto market slowing down in the U.S. and Toyota finding fewer markets and segments to enter.
Soaring sales of Nintendo's Wii game machine have made former Nintendo chairman Hiroshi Yamauchi Japan's richest man, worth $7.8 billion, Forbes magazine said in its annual rankings.
Oil's relentless push to yet another record high pressured Asian shares across the board Thursday, raising fears that inflation -- and central bank measures to cool it -- would hurt consumer spending and profits.
Japanese telecoms and Internet group Softbank posted a worse-than-expected 13 percent fall in quarterly operating profit on Thursday, as its marketing costs ballooned on efforts to win new subscribers.
There's an old adage in the car business that even in tough times, good cars will still sell. That might explain why certain models continue to fly off dealer lots and even sell at a higher price, even though the overall auto market is down. Perhaps the most interesting example is the new Chevy Malibu.
Asian stocks were mixed Wednesday with some markets reversing earlier advances. Resource firms, helped by record high oil prices and rising metal prices managed to hang on to their gains.
Asian markets were mostly weaker Tuesday after surging oil prices and worries that Bank of America would scrap a deal to buy mortgage firm Countrywide Financial hurt Wall Street.
Asian stocks were higher Monday, after upbeat U.S. jobs data buoyed Wall Street Friday, with stronger oil and metal prices lifting resource firms. Volumes were thin with both the Japanese and South Korean markets closed for national holidays.
After years of lamenting the "death of the car" and the rise of the SUV and CUV, fans of the sedan are finally seeing things turn their way. Last month, for the first time in roughly 20 years, cars outsold trucks (Pick-ups, SUVs, CUVs and minivans).
Asian markets were sharply higher Friday after better-than-expected economic data, a rebound in the U.S. dollar and falling oil prices and triggered a rally on Wall Street. Both Japan and Australia closed 2 percent higher.
The Japanese and Australian markets closed lower in the afternoon session Thursday. Trading was quiet with most markets in the region closed for the Labour Day holiday.
Most Asian markets closed lower Wednesday ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve rate decision later in the session. Japan finished slightly lower, but Shanghai was the stand out performer, up almost 5 percent.
Asian markets were lackluster on Tuesday following a flat finish in the U.S. stock market. But Greater China shares remained firm on the back of positive corporate earnings. Most investors were sidelined and cautious ahead of the Federal Reserve's two-day meeting.
Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, Japan's third-largest bank, said it would fall about 20 percent short of its earnings estimate for the year that ended in March, hurt by losses on its stock holdings and higher provisions for bad loans.
Panasonic maker Matsushita posted on Monday a 15 percent rise in quarterly operating profit thanks to brisk sales of flat TVs, and forecast a larger-than-expected gain this year, with its mobile phones and DVD recorders also selling well.
Asian markets trimmed their early gains on Monday as investors took a breather following a rally in financial stocks. But many remained optimistic that the banking sector may finally be putting the credit crunch behind it.
Japanese retail sales rose 1.1 percent in March from a year earlier, government data showed on Monday, matching economists' median forecast.
Panasonic maker Matsushita Electric Industrial and Sanyo Electric may tie up in the first reorganisation move among Japan's top electronics makers, the Yomiuri newspaperreported on Monday, but the two companies quickly rejected the report.