ASX surges 2.3%
Australia's S&P ASX 200 index touched its highest level since end-May 2008, breaking a four-session losing streak. Meanwhile, the Australian dollar trimmed gains to $0.7746 per dollar. Choppy trade in the currency ensued after the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) governor Glenn Stevens said early Friday that lower interest rates may not have the same effect of boosting demand as they once did, but monetary policy isn't at a point where it has no effect at all.
"The central bank has a clear easing bias at the moment and while the swaps market and Aussie dollar didn't react wildly to today's comments, it's almost as if the market feels a March [rate] cut is a foregone conclusion," Stan Shamu, IG market strategist, wrote in a note.
Overnight gains in key commodity prices like oil boosted the resource-heavy bourse; Big miners such as BHP Billiton and Fortescue Metals elevated 4.8 and 5.7 percent each, while oil and gas producer Santos recouped Thursday's losses by ratcheting up 4.4 percent.
Earnings continue to be in play; Shares of Rio Tinto rocketed 6.5 percent after reporting a 78 percent increase in full-year net profit for 2014. The world's number 2 miner also said it would return $2 billion to shareholders through a buyback.
"Cost cuts [help to] streamline the company to take advantage of the future. It is getting its structure correct and focusing on the core game," Jonathan Barratt, CIO of Ayers Alliance Securities, told CNBC Asia's "Squawk Box." "The rally today shows that shareholders and markets are liking it."
Read MoreRio Tinto CEO: Time to build, not buy
A more than 50 percent increase in first half profit lifted metal recycler Sims Metals by 11 percent. Gold producer Newcrest Mining underperformed to close flat, despite delivering a 400 percent rise in first-half net profit.