Asian stocks ended the week in negative territory, pulling back from record highs after a weeklong rally.
After a brief pause in the morning session, Asian stocks regained momentum to extend their record run in the afternoon and close higher across the board. Markets in Hong Kong, Australia and South Korea all touched lifetime highs.
South Korea's central bank held interest rates steady on Thursday, as expected, in the face of risk from turbulent global financial markets and despite data bolstering the case for further monetary tightening.
Asian markets closed broadly higher Wednesday, having been cheered by a rally on Wall Street the previous day after the Federal Open Market Committee's meeting minutes revealed a unanimous decision to cut US interest rates.
Asian markets swung back into positive territory to close higher Tuesday with Australia setting a new record and South Korea finishing almost flat after an erratic session with stocks see-sawing.
Asian markets finished mixed Monday, with South Korea closing at a new record high while China closed having reached record intra-day peaks. Trading volume was thin with Japanese markets closed for a one-day holiday.
Asian stocks had a mixed end to the week as many investors stayed out of the market in the run-up to the U.S. jobs data due later Friday. Japanese, South Korean and Taiwanese stocks were weaker, but the Heng Seng enjoyed a late-session rally.
Asian stocks finished mostly lower Thursday as losses in the chip sector pulled the major indexes into the red, following a negative report on Intel.
The leaders of North and South Korea pledged on Thursday to bring peace to the Cold War's last frontier by seeking talks with China and the United States to formally end the 1950-1953 Korean War.
Asian stocks finished mixed Wednesday following a late-session decline in Hong Kong and Singapore as investors took profits in the wake of a two-day rally.
The leaders of the Koreas got down to talks on Wednesday after a cool start to a summit between two countries divided by decades of animosity, but news of a deal on unwinding Pyongyang's nuclear arms program could lift the mood.
Asian markets finished higher across the board Tuesday, with Hong Kong, Australia, Singapore and South Korea in record-breaking territory lifted by financial companies after big banks, including Citigroup, set out their losses from subprime crisis, raising hopes that the worst may be over.
South Korea's president arrived in Pyongyang on Tuesday to the cheers of North Koreans and the handshake of leader Kim Jong-il for a summit aimed at ending a half century of animosity born in the Cold War.
South Korea's current account surplus hit a nine-month high in August on booming exports despite a slow U.S. economy, data showed on Tuesday, putting fresh upward pressure on an already-rising won.
Asian markets finished broadly in positive territory Monday, with Singapore seeing the best of the day's gains. Japan and South Korea both finished higher but Australia gave up earlier gains to close just a touch lower.
South Korean exports in September unexpectedly suffered their first annual drop in more than five years on long holidays, data showed on Monday, amid lingering concern about increasingly uncertain global economic conditions.
Asian markets finished the week mixed Friday with Australia setting a new record as the surge in oil and commodity prices boosted shares of resource producers. But Japanese stocks lost steam after yesterday's advance and finished the day weaker.
Asian markets closed higher across the board Thursday, with banking and technology stocks climbing after gains on Wall Street. Australia closed at a new peak while Japan finished at a six-week high.
Asian stocks finished mostly in the green Wednesday, following a quiet trading day with a couple of markets closed for public holidays. The U.S. dollar hit another record low against the euro after weak U.S. economic data boosted expectations the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates again next month.
Renewed concerns about credit markets and a slide in the U.S. dollar hurt some Asian financial and technology stocks Tuesday, but higher metals prices pushed Australian shares to close at a record high.