Asian stocks widened losses on Thursday as investors worried over rising inflationary pressures in China, but South Korean shares rallied over 1 percent after the Bank of Korea surprised markets with a 25 basis point cut.
The Korean central bank's move follows easing measures by the European Central Bank and the Reserve Bank of Australia over the past week.
"I think there's big change in market perception here. At the beginning of the year, lots of clients were asking me about who's going to be the first to raise interest rates. And what have we seen since Mr. Kuroda made his announcement on the 4th of April? We've had a significant increase in the amount of quantitative easing," said Adrian Mowat, chief Asian and emerging markets equity strategist at JP Morgan Securities (Asia Pacific).
Elsewhere, the Shanghai Composite snapped a four-day winning streak after China's inflation quickened at a faster-than-expected pace, while both Australia's S&P ASX 200 and Japan's benchmark Nikkei pared gains after charging to their highest level in nearly five years.