Japanese shares hit a four-and-a-half-year high on Friday on optimism over monetary stimulus, while other Asian markets recovered from previous losses after a strong U.S jobless claims report revealed that a recovery was well under way in the world's largest economy.
The Nikkei closed well-above the 12,500-mark, Australian shares rallied 1.7 percent to outperform the region and the Shanghai market shot up from an earlier two-month low. Meanwhile, Seoul's Kospi closed at its lowest levels in over three weeks.
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For the week, the Nikkei came in first place with a gain of 2.2 percent while the Shanghai Composite was the market's biggest loser, down 1.7 percent.
"The rally this year has been slow-and-steady which is a healthier sign than a rapid rise, which so often precipitates a similar fall. Although just lately it's been akin to a tortoise climbing Mount Everest as equities seem to be running out of steam as we reach the summit," said Jason Hughes of IG Markets in a note.