Sydney 0.2% higher
Australia's benchmark index was little changed in quiet trade as investors digested August's trade figures. The nation posted a wider-than-expected trade deficit of A$815 million, but that was still narrower than July's reading of $A1.4 billion.
Mining stocks were dealt a blow on the back of lower metals prices. Gold miners Kingsgate Consolidated and Newcrest Mining closed down nearly 4 percent while Whitehaven Coal lost 1.8 percent.
(Read more: Is Australia's rate-cutting cycle over?)
Larger losses were limited after the nation's Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics forecasted a 17 percent rise in iron ore exports for the 2013-2014 fiscal year.
Steep declines in auto stocks dragged Seoul's benchmark index below the 2,000 mark. Hyundai Motor and Kia Motor slumped 2.7 and 4.5 percent respectively, after U.S auto sales for September declined in nearly two years. Hyundai Mobis fell 2.6 percent.
Index heavyweight Samsung Electronics rallied 2.6 percent before posting third-quarter results on Friday, which marks the beginning of Seoul's earnings season.
Memory chip makers tracked overnight gains in the U.S. semiconductor index. SK Hynix leading gains by 4 percent
Chinese financial markets remain shut for the week-long Golden Week holiday, while India is also closed for Mahatma Gandhi's birthday.
— By CNBC.com's Nyshka Chandran. Follow her on Twitter