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Asian stocks end mixed before US payrolls; China property drags

Asian equities closed mixed in subdued trade on Tuesday as investors stayed on the sidelines before the U.S. September jobs report.

Amid gainers, Australia's S&P ASX 200 closed at a new five-year high, Japan's Nikkei closed at its highest in three weeks and South Korea's Kospi hit a two-year peak.

But the Shanghai Composite and Indian stocks underperformed.

"Ahead of the belated release of the September jobs report, markets are set to remain range bound, with most assets consolidating recent moves," said Mitul Kotecha, head of global FX strategy at Credit Agricole.

Symbol
Name
Price
 
Change
%Change
NIKKEI
---
HSI
---
ASX 200
---
SHANGHAI
---
KOSPI
---
CNBC 100
---

US jobs due

The closely-watched U.S. non-farm payrolls report for September is due for release later on Tuesday. It is expected to show that ahead of the government shutdown, 180,000 new jobs were created last month.

(Read more: Big jobs Tuesday: better late than never?)

Meanwhile, Chicago Federal Reserve President Charles Evans told CNBC that it will be "tough" for the central bank to have sufficient confidence in the strength of the U.S. recovery by its December meeting to start scaling back its bond-buying program.

Shanghai down 0.8%

China's benchmark index accelerated losses in afternoon trade, retreating further from the previous day's one-week high after average new home prices in major cities rose 9 percent from 2012, marking the ninth straight month of annual increases.

Real-estate developers fell on the news. Shanghai Shimao led losses by 2 percent while Poly Real Estate and Gemdale closed down 1.7 percent.

"All eyes fall on Thursday's HSBC 'flash' manufacturing numbers and while there isn't any consensus traders could still react, especially as the hotter house prices will only add to inflation forces, which in turn are back on the market's radar after PBOC advisor Son Guoqing talked about tightening policy somewhat if inflation stays above 3 percent," said Chris Weston, market strategist at IG."

The benchmark index traded just 12 points shy of falling below its 200-day simple moving average (SMA) of 2,198 points.

Nikkei 0.1% higher

Japan's benchmark index erased earlier losses to edge up to a new three-week closing high for a second straight session.

Dollar-yen climbed above the 98 handle and that lifted consumer electronic exporters. Camera makers Nikon and Canon rose 1.2 and 0.6 percent, respectively while Sharp added 1.7 percent.

Apple-related stocks received a boost ahead of the tech giant's highly-anticipated product launch on Tuesday. Daishinku added 1.3 percent and Murata Manufacturing closed up 3 percent higher.

Sydney up 0.4%

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Australia's benchmark index climbed above 5,370 points to hit a new five-year high for a third consecutive session. The ASX's relative strength index (RSI) rose to 62, indicating that it is fast approaching overbought territory.

(Read more: The rally from down under – are Aussie stocks unstoppable?)

Global miner BHP Billiton jumped 2.3 percent after reporting an annual 23 percent jump in first-quarter iron-ore production early Tuesday. That also saw Fortescue Metals add 1.5 percent.

Retailer David Jones skidded over 2 percent after CEO Paul Zahra announced his resignation.

Kospi rises 0.1%

South Korea's benchmark index also recouped early losses to log a new two-year closing high after foreigners extended their buying streak for a 38th consecutive session, the longest on record.

Among techs, Samsung Electronics closed down 0.6 percent following an earlier 1.5 percent decline ahead of posting quarterly earnings later this week. Memory chip-maker SK Hynix tumbled over 4 percent on profit-taking

Shinhan Financial lost 3 percent after BNP Paribas decided to sell around 4.8 million shares of the lender.

India slips 0.14%

India's benchmark index retreated from the previous session's three-year closing high of 20,893 while the rupee inched down 0.2 percent to 67.7 per dollar.

By CNBC.com's Nyshka Chandran. Follow her on Twitter @NyshkaCNBC

Symbol
Price
 
Change
%Change
NIKKEI
---
ASX 200
---
S&P 500
---
BLT
---
KOSPI
---
JPY/USD
---
FMG
---
SHANGHAI
---
7731.T
---
7203.T
---
66
---
7751.T
---
6753.T
---
6758.T
---
USD/INR
---

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