Gains in Asia continued for a second session on Thursday but momentum was tepid due to a lack of fresh catalysts as investors look ahead to the Bank of Japan's policy decision due Friday.
Amid out-performers, Hong Kong stocks surged 1 percent ahead of first quarter earnings reports while upbeat economic growth data lifted Seoul's benchmark Kospi to its highest levels in nearly two weeks.
Investors will be watching Bank of Japan chief Haruhiko Kuroda on Friday for signs of any further stimulus as the central bank meets for the first time after unveiling a blockbuster easing program earlier this month.
(Read More: After 'Shock and Awe,' What Next From the BOJ?)
Adding to Asia's sluggish mood was a near flat close on Wall Street overnight. The Dow broke its three-day rally as investors digested a batch of corporate earnings against a disappointing durable goods orders report.